Pirates place closer Jason Grilli on the disabled list

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Jason Grilli’s transformation from journeyman middle reliever to stud closer will be put on hold for at least two weeks, as the Pirates placed him on the disabled list with a strained forearm.

Grilli left last night’s game in the ninth inning accompanied by a trainer and in obvious pain, and he’s apparently on his way to Pittsburgh to be examined further.

Grilli made his first All-Star team at age 36 and has saved a league-leading 30 games with a 2.34 ERA and 66 strikeouts in 42 innings after coming into the season with five career saves. Mark Melancon, who also made his first All-Star team in a setup role, will take over ninth-inning duties.

Joe Musgrove shut down with ab discomfort

Joe Musgrove
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Pirates right-hander Joe Musgrove is done for the year after suffering an abdominal wall muscle strain and stress reaction in his pelvic bone. While he isn’t expected to undergo surgery or miss additional time in 2019, he’s been prescribed six weeks of rest before resuming any baseball-related activities.

Musgrove, 25, finished out his third year in Pittsburgh with a 6-9 record in 19 starts, backed by a 4.06 ERA, 1.8 BB/9, and 7.8 SO/9. Despite logging a career-high 115 1/3 innings at the major league level, he’s also been dogged by a string of injuries, from the shoulder strain that robbed him of eight weeks at the start of the season to an index finger infection that kept him sidelined for a minimum 10-day stay on the disabled list in June.

While he works his way back up to full strength yet again, rookie right-hander Nick Kingham is expected to cover for him and will make a spot start during the Pirates’ series finale against the Brewers on Sunday. The 26-year-old righty hasn’t started a single game for the team since August 1, and currently carries a 4.69 ERA, 2.7 BB/9, and 8.1 SO/9 over 71 innings out of the rotation and bullpen.