The Pittsburgh Pirates are looking at Justin Masterson to be one of their starting pitchers last season, despite his injuries over the last two years and a rough 2015 with the Boston Red Sox.
Masterson has started in just nine games last season and 25 in 2014 as he was moved from the Cleveland Indians to the St. Louis Cardinals. But the Pirates have been great over the last few years in finding bargains and great value in their signings, and are hoping that with Masterson, who probably won’t be getting more than a one year deal considering his desire as well to build up his value and reputation, which has sunken quite a bit since leaving Cleveland.
He was an All-Star in 2013 so it wasn’t too long ago when he was one of the best in the league, even for a short stint. Turning him into a number 5 or even number 6 starter, or maybe a reliever for a long period coming out of the bullpen. He did come in as a reliever in nine of his 18 games last season for the Red Sox, so this won’t be anything new if the Pirates decide to do it.
Masterson has been in the league since 2008, starting in Boston and moving on for more productive years in Cleveland until his trade to St. Louis, where things started falling apart for him. He made $9.5 million last season in Boston, and will probably have to take a lot less from the Pirates if he wants to end up there. There isn’t a whole lot of demand for him right now, so the market isn’t working in his favor.