The Pirates chosen right-hander Jose Soriano out of the Angels group with the highest decide in final December’s Rule 5 Draft, realizing on the time he nonetheless required a number of months of rehab following 2020 Tommy John surgical procedure. The hope was to get some innings out of Soriano in some unspecified time in the future this summer season, however Pirates director of sports activities drugs Todd Tomcyzk informed reporters yesterday that Soriano has new injury in his pitching elbow (Twitter link through the Pittsburgh Publish-Gazette’s Mike Persak). One other surgical procedure is now potential.
It’s a discouraging final result for the 22-year-old Soriano, who’s now practically 16 months faraway from that 2020 Tommy John process. He’d progressed his rehab to the purpose the place he’d been cleared to pitch in minor league video games as a ramp-up to his MLB debut, however primarily based on his outcomes, it’s clear that one thing was amiss. Soriano appeared in two video games, the primary of which included three shutout innings with one hit, no walks and 5 punchouts. In his second outing, Soriano confronted 10 batters however was clobbered for seven runs on 5 hits and three walks whereas solely recording two outs.
[Related: 2020 Rule 5 Draft Results | April Update On Rule 5 Draftees]
Getting into the season, Soriano was ranked because the Pirates’ No. 18 prospect at Baseball America, No. 22 at FanGraphs and No. 24 at MLB.com. He’s praised as a hard-throwing righty with potential nearer upside due to an upper-90s heater that may contact triple digits and an influence curveball. His 2019 season in A-ball confirmed off loads of that upside (2.55 ERA, 26 p.c strikeout price, 52.8 p.c grounder price) but additionally underscored one of the crucial urgent pink flags within the righty’s outlook (15 p.c stroll price).
The brand new damage casts doubt on whether or not Soriano will pitch for the Pirates in 2021 — or in any respect. He’s already on the 60-day injured listing, so the Bucs can preserve him there till season’s finish with none ramification, even when he undergoes one other surgical procedure. When the offseason rolls round, nonetheless, they’d want to find out whether or not they need to carry Soriano all through the winter in hopes of getting some innings from him in 2022. Soriano would retain his Rule 5 standing into subsequent season, which means he nonetheless couldn’t be optioned to the minors till spending a minimum of 90 days on the lively roster.
If at any level the Pirates resolve to chop bait, Soriano could be positioned on waivers earlier than being provided again to the Angels, who wouldn’t want to hold him on the 40-man roster.