By Jason Shetler
GM Neal Huntington told members of the Pirates media today that Juan Nicasio will be in the mix for the fourth and fifth spots in the rotation alongside Jeff Locke and Ryan Vogelsong.
Nicasio pitched mostly as a starter with the Colorado Rockies from 2011 to 2014 where he posted a 5.03 ERA, but had a Fielding Independent Pitching of 4.39. Prior to last season, he was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers, and had a career year, posting an ERA of 3.86 along with a 2.83 FIP and a 10.0 K/9 in 53 appearances, which included one spot start. Nicasio signed with the Pirates back in December on a one-year deal worth $3 million. The original plan was to stretch out Nicasio as a long reliever in the bullpen, but he’s pitched extremely well in the games he’s started to this point. He really opened some eyes last week in Sarasota against the Baltimore Orioles when he struckout ten batters.