In mid December, Ryan Vogelsong signed a one-year deal with the Pirates.
He will open the 2016 season in Pittsburgh's bullpen, manager Clint Hurdle revealed on Wednesday.
“I told Ryan, this wasn’t about him not performing well,” Hurdle told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “He came into spring training and tracked things out that he wanted to do. It was about another guy really pitching the most effective we’ve ever seen him pitch and trying to leverage that opportunity for him.”
Juan Nicasio, who went 1-3 with a 3.86 ERA over 53 appearances (one start) for the Dodgers last season, beat out Vogelsong for the fifth and final spot in the rotation.
Over 15 innings this spring, Nicasio has not allowed a single run.
Vogelsong is 0-2 with a 6.08 ERA over 13.1 innings.
How did Vogelsong take the news?
“I informed Ryan as well, it’s a delay, it’s not denial," Hurdle added. "He’s a pro. He came here to win ballgames, he expressed the same sentiments to me on the way out, that I’m going to do everything I can to help us win ballgames and work to have a starting opportunity if that presents itself.
“He was completely professional. Disappointed, absolutely. You’d want him to be. He poured everything into that, and [starting] was one of his goals coming in.”