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Pirates choose Erik Bedard as Opening Day starter

Mar 22, 2012, 5:22 PM EDT

Pittsburgh Pirates starter Bedard walks to the dugout after pitching against the New York Yankees during a spring training baseball game in Tampa Reuters

Considering his lengthy injury history making this official with two weeks left in spring training seems sort of risky, but the Pirates announced that Erik Bedard will start Opening Day.

Manager Clint Hurdle told reporters that he’d planned to give the Opening Day assignment to A.J. Burnett after the Pirates acquired him from the Yankees, but then Burnett went and fractured his orbital bone while practicing bunts. That and his ERAs the past two seasons were 5.26 and 5.15.

Bedard was very effective when healthy last year for the Mariners and Red Sox, making 24 starts with a 3.62 ERA and 125/48 K/BB ratio in 129 innings. In fact, his ERA has been under 3.80 in each of the past five years, which is why he was worth a $4.5 million investment and gets the Game 1 call ahead of James McDonald and Kevin Correia.

  1. redguy12588 - Mar 22, 2012 at 5:28 PM

    Pirates fan here, it should be Jeff Karstens.

  2. jayquintana - Mar 22, 2012 at 5:58 PM

    As a Mariners fan, all I can say is, “thank you, Pittsburgh!” Bedard’s without question the softest player in MLB.

    • borninfellspoint - Mar 23, 2012 at 10:58 AM

      Orioles fan here. I have to agree w/ the above statement!

  3. WhenMattStairsIsKing - Mar 22, 2012 at 6:00 PM

    “I don’t always stay healthy, but when I do, I’m quite effective. Play ball, my friends.”

  4. mikeincmn - Mar 22, 2012 at 6:47 PM

    Yeah, honestly a bit surprised it wasn’t Karstens as well.

  5. reachers87 - Mar 22, 2012 at 7:04 PM

    Karstens earned it and should be the opening day starter.

  6. prosourcetalk - Mar 22, 2012 at 7:16 PM

    Don’t worry guys, Bedard will manage to hurt himself in the next two weeks and they’ll hand it over to Karstens

  7. rob0527 - Mar 22, 2012 at 7:45 PM

    At least we know Bedard will make at least 1 start. Good luck Pirates fans.

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