A ton of injured to update today…
-Charlie Morton has been activated from the 15-day disabled list, and has been optioned to AAA. Morton struggled big time in the majors this year, and hasn’t been much better at AAA during his rehab work, with a 4.33 ERA in 27 innings, and a 21:10 K/BB ratio during that time. Those numbers look somewhat good, mostly due to a nine inning outing where Morton allowed one run on two hits, with a walk and four strikeouts. His other outings in AAA haven’t been as good.
Morton only has one option year left, which means if he stays down for 20 or more days on optional assignment, he will be out of options for the 2011 season. There has been a rumor that the Pirates were in talks to trade Morton to the Arizona Diamondbacks for catcher Chris Snyder before the front office firings in Arizona. Despite Morton’s struggles, that seems like a strange trade and a strange rumor.
-Starling Marte returned from injury earlier than expected. Marte played in the GCL game today, going 2-for-4 with a run scored. He will spend about a week in the Gulf Coast League before his next move, which my guess would be a return to high-A (unless they wanted to send him all the way to State College, then West Virginia, only to return back to Bradenton).
-Speaking of rehabbing players in the Gulf Coast League, Quinton Miller made a rehab appearance yesterday, along with Brett Lorin. Both pitchers pitched two perfect innings, striking out one. Miller said he felt good after the outing, so hopefully both of those top pitching prospects can make it back to their normal levels sooner, rather than later. Colton Cain also made an appearance today, allowing one run on three hits in 3.2 innings, with three walks and five strikeouts. Cain technically isn’t rehabbing, although he was injured at the start of the year, and his injury probably set him back to the GCL, rather than State College with the other top prep pitchers from the 2009 draft class.
-Neil Walker is expected to return to the lineup tonight after missing a few games with a concussion. I never thought I’d say this before the season, but it will be a big boost to have Walker back in the lineup.
-Zach Duke will start his rehab work with Altoona, and probably will make two rehab starts at the level.
-Steve Pearce missed two games during his rehab stint in AAA with a sore left knee. Pearce could have an MRI if the problem lingers. Chris Jakubauskas, also doing rehab work in AAA, will miss a week with a strained right hip flexor.