Pirates manager Clint Hurdle has cautioned that the club's projected rotation after this weekend is written in pencil but at the moment Francisco Liriano is in line to open the postseason for the Pirates should they advance to October.

Hurdle said the team has also discussed throwing Liriano on short rest in the final series at Cincinnati if needed. A.J. Burnett projects as the club's No. 2 postseason starter with Charlie Morton and Gerrit Cole following as the third and fourth options.

Liriano (16-7 2.92 ERA) has been the team's best starter this season though he's fallen off some in the second half.

“If there were no changes Liriano would be able to pitch a play-in game or the first wild card game which isn't a bad option” Hurdle said. “We'll release the next rotation when it comes out but we have every opportunity to stay on line. We'll see if we need to make any adjustment based upon the schedule based upon wins and losses (or) opportunity.”

Hurdle again indicated there are no workload restrictions on rookie Gerrit Cole who entered his Thursday start vs. the Padres with a 1.35 ERA in three September starts.

If the Pirates skip Jeff Locke's final start and make no other rotation adjustments Cole is in line to pitch twice more in the regular season including the final regular season game in Cincinnati. But for the moment all the only concrete plans are Liriano will pitch Friday's series opener against the Reds and he will be followed by Burnett and Locke.