Brandon Morrow has already been ruled out for the rest of the season due to a entrapped radial nerve in his right forearm, but there’s still a chance that he’ll require surgery.
Morrow hasn’t pitched for the Blue Jays since May 28 due to the injury and was advised last month to shut things down for six weeks. He’s halfway through that timetable right now and tells Evan Peaslee of MLB.com that a determination on surgery will be made after he resumes throwing.
“To test it, I need to be off the mound throwing bullpens at 100 percent effort level,” Morrow said. “I can’t go through and baby it. I need to know if it’s going to be good or not.”
If deemed necessary, surgery would take place in October and carries an estimated recovery time of three months. This would give Morrow a chance to be ready for spring training.
After posting a 2.96 ERA over 21 starts last season, Morrow struggled to the tune of a 5.63 ERA in 10 starts this year. He has never thrown more than 179 1/3 innings in a season. The 29-year-old is owed $8 million next season while his contract includes $10 million club option or $1 million buyout for 2015.
Per The Athletic’s Matt Gelb, Phillies starter Zack Wheeler will miss at least two starts when his wife goes into labor and gives birth to their first child, expected to be later this month. Wheeler, in fact, is not sure if he will return to play at all once their child is born.
Wheeler said, “We just have to see how things are here at the field and at the stadium. I’m happy with what I see so far. But things could change, especially once our baby’s born. I always think about what’s going on around me. Is it safe? Is it OK? Literally every single day. I have to just ask myself that. I’m going to continue to keep asking myself that every day.”
Wheeler, 30, inked a five-year, $118 million contract with the Phillies in December. He is slated for the No. 2 spot in the rotation behind Aaron Nola. Last season, with the Mets, Wheeler posted a 3.96 ERA with 195 strikeouts and 50 walks over 195 1/3 innings.
The No. 5 spot in the Phillies’ rotation is currently up for grabs between Nick Pivetta, Vince Velasquez, Ranger Suárez, and prospect Spencer Howard. One of the remaining three could fill in for Wheeler when he needs time off, temporarily or otherwise.