Pirates will skip Trevor Williams (flu) in rotation, Joe Musgrove moved up to start Saturday
The Pittsburgh Pirates announced that Trevor Williams has been bumped from his scheduled Saturday start because of “severe flu-like symptoms,” and that Joe Musgrove’s turn in the rotation will be moved up a day to pitch in Williams’ place against the Philadelphia Philies.
Williams was tagged for season highs allowed of eight runs and 11 hits in his most recent start this past Sunday at the Chicago Cubs. In his past four outings, Williams has a 9.53 ERA and 1.093 opponent OPS. He was one of the best starters in the majors last season after the All-Star break but is a mediocre 3-3 with a 5.17 ERA and 1.36 WHIP this season.
The announcement about the scratch of Williams came late during Friday night’s game against Philadelphia.
Because of a team idle day Thursday, Musgrove will be pitching on a regular four days rest Saturday. He threw 104 pitches but did not make it out of the fifth inning of what was a 7-0 loss at St. Louis on Monday.
Joe Musgrove with what he calls “The Rick Vaughn Look” pic.twitter.com/RdBKd56Ed0
— Chris Adamski (@C_AdamskiTrib) July 7, 2019
Musgrove has had an odd stretch where he’s been often pitching on peculiar days rest or adjusting on the fly. He was ejected during the first inning of a game in Atlanta on June 10, then struggled when he came back three days later. The Pirates gave him a full week off before he pitched again – effectively, this time – and he had another strong outing before two consecutive starts before the All-Star break were affected by long rain delays.
Musgrove (6-8, 4.31) has been the Pirates most consistent starting pitcher all season – the only one not to spend time on the injured list – and a good argument can be made that he’s their best starter.
The Pirates said they will announce Sunday’s starter – and probably pitchers going forward – at a later time, likely Saturday afternoon.
Chris Adamski is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Chris by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .