Pirates rained out in Cincinnati; Joe Musgrove’s start pushed back
For the third consecutive year, the Pittsburgh Pirates have had a weather-related postponement during their season-opening series.
Saturday’s scheduled afternoon game in Cincinnati was not played and will be made up as part of a day-night doubleheader May 27. Last season, the opener in Detroit was snowed out. In 2017, there was a rainout in Boston.
The Pirates’ pitching rotation was tweaked because of the postponement. Trevor Williams’ start was bumped back a day, as he will pitch Sunday’s 1:10 p.m. series finale at Great American Ball Park. Joe Musgrove initially was scheduled to start but won’t make his season debut until Thursday at PNC Park.
This likely was maneuvered to keep Chris Archer as the starter for Monday’s home opener. Jameson Taillon will make his second start of the season during the Pirates’ second home game Wednesday.
The Reds will keep Saturday’s scheduled starter, Sonny Gray, for Sunday’s game.
The makeup for Saturday’s game is Memorial Day, with the first pitches of the doubleheader scheduled for 2:10 p.m. and 7:10 p.m.
Marte ready to go
Center fielder Starling Marte was back in the posted lineup after missing the opener with a migraine. He worked out Friday without problem.
Making an impression
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle was impressed with reliever Nick Burdi’s appearance Thursday. The right-hander pitched the eighth inning and struck out the three batters he faced. Burdi, 26, had Tommy John surgery May 3, 2017. He made it back to the majors last September and gave up four runs while retiring one batter at St. Louis. He also threw a scoreless inning at Milwaukee.
Hurdle said Saturday that Burdi’s delivery is more fluid this season, in part because he has been able to throw in the offseason instead of going through rehab for the elbow operation.
“What a difference a season makes from the time he was on the mound in St. Louis to end the season to the young man we saw on the mound (Thursday),” Hurdle said. “There is a difference, in my eye test, to his delivery. It’s much more smooth.”
The Pirates traded RHP Aaron Slegers to the Tampa Bay Rays for cash considerations. He was with the Pirates for spring training but did not make the club and was designated for assignment earlier this week.
Chris Adamski is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Chris by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .