But the Pirates' manager did leave open the possibility of McDonald's spot in the rotation being in jeopardy. James McDonald has been removed from the Pittsburgh Pirates' starting rotation. McDonald has fallen off considerably since a strong first half. McDonald is 3-5 with a 7.08 ERA in the second half, after going 9-3 with a 2.37 ERA in the first half. "I think it's all part of the maturation process of a young man, a starting pitcher in the Major Leagues, and we've definitely seen two different sides of it this year, two different halves."