Pittsburgh Pirates farm director Larry Broadway is currently in Altoona, along with a lot of the coordinators in the system. Sean McCool spoke with Broadway on a few subjects, including the progress of the two pitching prospects who have been returning from Tommy John this year.
The big news last night was that Clay Holmes was pulled from his start in Bradenton after just two innings of work. Wilbur Miller was at the game, and noted that Holmes finished the second inning on three pitches, then Henry Hirsch was ready to go for the third. It seemed like it was planned for Holmes to only go two innings, and Broadway confirmed that was the case.
“We’re just managing his overall workload – lessening his work load – because he’s been a little fatigued in his return to play,” Broadway said. “We’re just lightening him up a little bit.”
Jameson Taillon had a setback with hernia surgery, after looking great in his return from Tommy John. Broadway said that Taillon is getting close to starting to throw, but didn’t have exact dates.
“It’s kind of day-to-day now, but at some point in the near future, we’ll have him start to play some light catch and move forward,” Broadway said.
The good news is that it doesn’t sound like the Pirates will be as conservative with this rehab as they were with his Tommy John rehab.
“The progression is different because it’s not an arm injury, so you’re not building back that volume on the arm as much,” Broadway said. “There’s some element of how he’s recovering from the surgery that it’s where we will take on the progression. It’s less about the volume on the elbow, and we won’t have to build him back as slow.”
Other Minor League Notes
**Gift Ngoepe has been placed on the Indianapolis disabled list with a left oblique injury. Ngoepe is the best defensive shortstop in the system, and had some success with the bat in Altoona before getting the promotion to Triple-A this year. There were some hoping that he’d get a September call-up for his defense up the middle. This kind of hurts those chances, although I’d say that Pedro Florimon being on the roster hurt the chances more.
**The Pirates have released Ulises Montilla. He looked good in the GCL in 2013, but suffered a lower leg injury last year and missed most of the 2014 season. He returned and hit well in a limited time in Morgantown this year. However, the Pirates never seemed high on him, as they demoted him from Jamestown last year after a few good games, and released him after an .814 OPS this year. That’s all a small sample size, and the important thing here is that he’s 23 years old. Any chance he had of moving through the system and becoming a prospect was removed with the injury last year.