Yesterday it was reported that Vin Mazzaro had been outrighted to Indianapolis, and that Duke Welker appeared to have Tommy John surgery. The Pirates just issued a press release saying that Mazzaro has accepted his assignment to Indianapolis, while confirming the surgery for Welker.
This is the third time that Mazzaro has been outrighted to Triple-A, and the second time this year. He could have declined the assignment to become a free agent. However, he would have given up the remainder of his $950,000 salary. Considering no team claimed him off waivers for that same salary, it seems unlikely that he’d get the same deal as a free agent.
We knew that Welker was having surgery, but the assumption was that it was Tommy John. That was cleared up with this release. The Pirates gave the 12-18 month recovery timeline. Usually players are back closer to 12 months, which puts Welker out until the middle of next season.
Since Welker was in the minors, he doesn’t have to be added to the 60-day DL unless the Pirates need a 40-man spot. Considering they have a few spots open, it’s unlikely that Welker will be called up and placed on the 60-day DL.
Tim is the owner, producer, editor, and lead writer of PiratesProspects.com. He has been running Pirates Prospects since 2009, becoming the first new media reporter and outlet covering the Pirates at the MLB level in 2011 and 2012. His work can also be found in Baseball America, where he has been a contributor since 2014 and the Pirates' correspondent since 2019.