(Photo Credit: David Hague)

Charlie Morton Unsure of Future After First Rehab Appearance

Charlie Morton made his first rehab appearance for the Pirates Double-A affiliate Altoona Curve tonight since being placed on the 15 day Disabled List with a sports hernia.

His night ended after four innings, during which he gave up four hits, two earned runs, walked one batter and struck out six. He also induced six ground ball outs. All of his outs were recorded by way of a ground out or a strike out. He threw 73 pitches, 49 for strikes.

“My speed was okay, I thought the movement was good on my sinker. Changeup was really good, and my curveball was okay. I made a couple of good pitches with it, and I threw a couple that I didn’t really know where they were going. My off-speed stuff was there and the movement on my sinker was there,” Morton said after his outing was completed.

Morton says he felt “about as good as I expected to,” but is not sure what the future holds for him the rest of the season.

“I’m not sure what the plan is. I know the minor league season is over on [September 1st], so there’s not really anytime for me to come back out and get a rehab start. But [the next step] is to be determined.”

Morton’s injury occurred during his start on June 2nd against the Padres, and attempted to pitch through the pain over the next two and a half months. But Morton could not speculate what effect the injury had on his pitching.

“There were really good games and there were really bad games. So I would tend to say that I couldn’t really base my pitching on how I felt. So it’s really the kind of thing where you manage [the pain], and you try to make pitches.”

Since his June 2nd start, Morton is 3-5 with a 4.33 ERA in 79 innings.

Since being placed on the Disabled List, Morton has been rehabbing, continuing to throw bullpens, and maintain as much of a normal routine as possible.

“I do what I can day-to-day. It’s just the kind of thing where it affects you differently day-to-day. It’s just frustrating. It’s just really frustrating because I’m used to having a certain routine doing certain things in between starts. So you [have to] alter it, just like anything else.”

Morton is not sure whether or not he will pitch for the Pirates again this season.

“The team is what’s most important to me. I want what’s best for the team. And if that’s me being on the mound, so be it. And if it’s not, so be it. But my goal is to get back out there as soon as possible, and as effectively as possible.”

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  • leowalter

    All in all I thought it was a less than promising outing. I watched Morton warm up and he didn’t appear to me to have Major League velocity,and it appeared that was true during the game. He topped out at 88 on the PNG field radar. Command wasn’t great, but he did have better control than he had on his last Pirate start.

    • Pete Ellis

      The radar gun up in the press box had him sitting between 89-92. The gun at PNG is a couple of ticks off.

      • leowalter

        I have known that for 16 years. That is why I made sure I said it was ” on the PNG field radar.” I feel pretty safe in saying that two 89s I saw were the two pitches that showed 92 in the Press Box. It appeared that he was sitting pretty much at 89-90, judging from the reactions of the Richmond hitters. His changeup had the best action.

  • smurph

    If they make the playoffs he could get another game in. Otherwise, he could join the Pirates and pitch a couple of simulated games. Better to have too many starters than not enough.

  • smurph

    My mistake. I was thinking Bradenton. Curve is out of the playoffs.

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