Feb 15, 2014; Bradenton, FL, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Francisco Liriano (47) looks on prior to the Pirates

Pirates name Francisco Liriano Opening Day starter

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The pieces are being set for March 31 all across baseball, and now the Pirates have their Opening Day starter announced.

Coming off of a 9th-place Cy Young Award finish, Francisco Liriano will be on the bump for the Bucs as they open the season against the Chicago Cubs, reports Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune. Liriano was the club’s number 2 pitcher last year behind A.J. Burnett, who started the first game last season for Pittsburgh. This year, Burnett has signed with the Phillies, and the Pirates will turn to Liriano to carry the pitching staff.

The 30-year old should be more than up to the task. Last season, Liriano compiled a 16-8 record with a 3.02 ERA, the lowest it had been since his rookie campaign in Minnesota. Liriano was part of a pitching rotation that was able to lead the Pirates to their first post-season berth in twenty years.

Francisco Liriano is also scheduled to be a free agent following the 2014 season.

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Tags: Pittsburgh Pirates

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