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Charlie Morton Hurt; How Will Injury Affect Pirates' Starting Rotation?

The Pirates have tweeted that starting pitcher Charlie Morton had surgery on Monday due to a torn labrum in his hip. David Todd at Bucs Dugout has some details. Apparently, the injury has been bothering Morton for a while, but this is the first we've ever heard of it.

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Also, it will apparently take about six months for Morton to recover. That calls into question his availability at the start of the season. With the potential departure of Paul Maholm also looming, this could put the Pirates in a tough spot at the beginning of the season, in that they would only have two remaining starting pitchers with a decent chance of providing stability (James McDonald and Jeff Karstens). If in fact Morton could be out at the beginning of the season, it's all the more important that the Pirates bring back Maholm.

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UPDATE: Michael Sanserino writes that Morton's doctors hope he will be back within four months, in which case there hopefully wouldn't be a problem.

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For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.