If you are a Pittsburgh Pirates‘ fan and you have been waiting for Wandy Rodriguez to return from the disabled list, you are going to have to wait a lot longer unfortunately. After throwing a bullpen session on Friday, Rodriguez felt more tightness in his left forearm. He has been shut down indefinitely, and will meet with the Pirates’ medical staff to determine what the next steps are in his recovery process.
The Pirates have been lucky that a bunch of different pitchers have stepped up this season. The opening day starting rotation consisted of A.J. Burnett, Rodriguez, Jonathan Sanchez, Jeff Locke and James McDonald. Burnett, Rodriguez and McDonald are all on the disabled list and Sanchez is no longer with the team after being released. Thanks to guys like Jeanmar Gomez, Brandon Cumpton, Francisco Liriano, Charlie Morton and Gerrit Cole, the Pirates starting rotation hasn’t been hurt much by the injuries to the opening day rotation.
Burnett threw a 38-pitch bullpen session on Friday and the team is happy with his progress. Next Tuesday, Burnett is scheduled to throw a simulated game. While Rodriguez’s return is nowhere close, it appears Burnett isn’t all that far from returning to the Pirates’ rotation.
There has been a ton of speculation that Cole will be optioned back to Triple-A Indianapolis when Burnett and Rodriguez return to the rotation; so at least Cole can stay with the Pirates for a while longer with Rodriguez being shut down.