Despite ugly spring, Edinson Volquez likely to wind up in the Pirates’ rotation


Edinson Volquez has had a nightmarish spring, allowing 13 runs (11 earned) on 14 hits and five walks while striking out eight. Three of those hits are home runs. The right-hander just hasn’t been the same since a breakout 2008 season with the Reds, when he finished with a 3.21 ERA in 196 innings.

Still, Volquez is very likely to wind up at the back of the Pirates’ starting rotation, according to GM Neal Huntington, via Travis Sawchik of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. As a result, lefty Jeff Locke will either move to the bullpen or return to Triple-A Indianapolis.

Jharel Cotton to undergo Tommy John surgery

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Athletics right-hander Jharel Cotton will undergo Tommy John surgery, per an announcement on Saturday. Cotton initially experienced some elbow soreness during a Cactus League start earlier this week and was officially diagnosed with a strained ulnar collateral ligament and strained flexor muscle on Thursday. He’ll be out of commission until 2019 at the earliest.

This isn’t the first time Cotton has dealt with elbow issues. According to’s Jane Lee, he had screws inserted in his right elbow after sustaining a stress fracture in 2013 and suffered some minor elbow discomfort again last fall. Prior to his diagnosis, the 26-year-old was poised for his third run with the A’s in 2018. He pitched his first full season with the club in 2017, turning in a 5.58 ERA, 3.7 BB/9 and 7.3 SO/9 in 24 starts and 129 innings.

Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle adds that the team is open to adding pitching depth this spring, though they’ll wait to see if the price goes down on some free agents first. Barring that, right-handed long reliever Andrew Triggs could be tabbed to fill the fifth spot in the rotation.