BRADENTON, Fla. – Pirates’ left-handed pitching prospect Stephen Tarpley will start the 2016 season on the disabled list, after suffering an oblique injury last week. This was confirmed to me today by Pirates’ Director of Minor League Operations Larry Broadway. Tarpley was acquired last year in the Travis Snider trade, along with Steven Brault.
As Wilbur Miller wrote on Thursday, Tarpley left his start after throwing a few warm up pitches, and before throwing a pitch in the game. He stopped mid-warm up and huddled with the trainer and coaches at the mound. After one more pitch, he left holding his right side.
Tarpley isn’t currently throwing, and his timetable for a return isn’t known. That will be determined when he starts throwing again. I didn’t get a chance to talk with Tarpley today, as he wasn’t in the locker room after the A-ball games. This is the second year in a row that Tarpley started the season on the disabled list with the Pirates, after being down with shoulder soreness last year.
Tarpley is slated to go to Bradenton when he returns. He’s a high upside arm who sits 90-94 MPH with his fastball, touching 97, and has a solid changeup, along with a slider that he uses as an out pitch. We rated Tarpley the 14th best prospect in the system this year.