Brett Anderson to undergo season-ending back surgery

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It’s a lost season for the Rockies and now it’s pretty clearly a lost season for starter Brett Anderson.

Anderson will undergo season-ending surgery on Thursday to repair a disk in his lower back. It’s another frustrated season for Anderson, who always seems to pitch well — this year he had a 2.91 ERA over eight starts and as a career ERA+ of 112 — but just can’t stay on the field. He’s only pitched in as many as 20 games in a season one time: his rookie year in 2009.

The recovery time for his surgery is five months, so he should be ready to go by spring training. But the question is what team he’ll be playing for come spring training. The Rockies hold a $12 million team option on him and for a pitcher of his quality that’s not terrible. The question is whether they’re going to gamble that he’ll actually be able to pitch enough to make it worthwhile.

Video: Gift Ngoepe singles in his first major league at-bat

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Pirates infielder Gift Ngoepe, just called up from Triple-A Indianapolis, singled in his first major league at-bat on Wednesday evening against Cubs starter Jon Lester. It was a well-struck ground ball up the middle in the bottom of the fourth inning. Unfortunately for him, the Pirates could not bring him around to score.

Ngoepe, who was pinch-hitting, stayed in the game to play second base.

Shelby Miller getting third opinion on elbow from Dr. James Andrews

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Diamondbacks starter Shelby Miller was placed on the 10-day disabled list on Monday due to inflammation in his right elbow. He had a second opinion from Dr. Neal ElAttrache on Tuesday and is currently awaiting a third opinion from Dr. James Andrews, Craig Grialou of Arizona Sports reports. That he’s getting a third opinion seems to imply that Miller’s elbow issue is rather serious.

Miller, 26, hasn’t been able to catch a break since joining the Diamondbacks. Last year’s nightmarish season included a finger injury stemming from mechanical woes and a brief demotion to the minor leagues. In 20 starts in the majors last year, Miller posted an ugly 6.15 ERA. This year, his ERA is a mediocre 4.09 over four starts.

The Diamondbacks called up Zack Godley to take Miller’s spot in the rotation. There was some speculation that it would be Archie Bradley instead, but he’s been working out of the bullpen.