Pirates starter Charlie Morton has had Tommy John surgery, the Pirates indicated Thursday.
Dr. James Andrews performed the surgery.
Reports earlier Thursday suggested Tommy John surgery could be a possibility for Morton.
Morton last pitched May 29. After a relatively strong year as a sinkerballer in 2011, Morton struggled to keep the ball down. His control improved significantly in 2012, probably in part because his pitches weren’t moving as much as they did in 2011 (someone else made a similar observation a while back, but I can’t remember who), but batters hit him much harder.
In any case, the Pirates’ rotation currently consists of James McDonald, A.J. Burnett, Erik Bedard, Kevin Correia and Brad Lincoln. Health permitting, it may remain that way until Jeff Karstens returns from a rehab stint.
Morton will presumably return next year, but with his salary rising due to arbitration, it’s not clear whether the Pirates will tender him a contract.
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