Conner Uselton Done for Season; Meadows and Barnes Progressing

The Pittsburgh Pirates placed outfielder Conner Uselton on the minor league 60-day disabled list today, which ends his rookie season in the pro ball. The 72nd overall pick injured his hamstring while running out a grounder during his second game in the Gulf Coast League. He was diagnosed with what he described as “a little tear” after getting an MRI in Pittsburgh earlier this month, then received a second opinion on it before he was placed on the disabled list.

The GCL season ends in 50 days, so even if they made the playoffs, there is no chance of him returning. We will follow his progress to see if the Fall Instructional League is an option. That begins around mid-September and usually last for four weeks.

Progress for Meadows and Barnes

Austin Meadows and Barrett Barnes have both been down at Pirate City rehabbing from hamstring injuries. Barnes last played on June 11th, while Meadows was injured ten days later. Both players moved up to batting practice with the GCL players today. That’s usually a sign that they will begin playing GCL rehab games soon.

You will likely see them stay down down there for about ten days once that starts. The usual progress is five innings, followed by a day off. Then seven innings, day off, and another seven inning game. Then after another day off they get up to nine innings before progressing to playing on back-to-back days. You might see games at DH thrown in there, which could change the normal routine.

Junior Lopez also made some progress today, throwing his first bullpen. He was suspended 25 games at the start of the season, but got hurt while trying to stay in shape down at Pirate City and hasn’t pitched since early April. He was slated to begin the season at Bradenton.

West Virginia Roster Moves

The West Virginia Power made multiple roster moves before Friday’s game. Reliever Pasquale Mazzoccoli was promoted from Morgantown yesterday and added to the roster today. He replaced reliever Andrew Potter, who was released after five shaky outings in which he walked seven batters in 7.2 innings.

Catcher Brent Gibbs was placed on the disabled list and replaced by Yoel Gonzalez, who was promoted from Morgantown. Gibbs left Wednesday’s game early, although it appeared it was due to his inability to catch Luis Escobar. Gibbs has had a lot of trouble defensively behind the plate, except for a strong throwing arm. Gonzalez will give the pitching staff a solid defensive catcher on the days that Arden Pabst isn’t behind the plate. That has been lacking this season when Gibbs caught on Pabst’s off-days.


  • such a shame. losing valuable playing time. now there’s little chance of him starting next season in low a…?

    uselton, i mean

    • John Dreker
      July 14, 2017 8:02 pm

      Will probably depend more on how his off-season goes. If he shows up looking good in early March then he could start in Low-A.

    • Not necessarily – he did play 40 or 50 games for his HS team and there’s always instructional league once the GCL season is over. Before the CBA changed the signing deadline, high picks would rarely play the year they were drafted. Josh Bell, Pedro Alvarez and Taillon all debuted in A ball the year after they were drafted.

      You also have to consider the competition isn’t that fierce for CF. De la Cruz and Santos have face planted. Yondry Contreras has K’d in 44% of his AB. Peurifoy was a late round pick. Lolo Sanchez has taken advantage of his opportunity, so maybe him. But I don’t necessarily see it as a fait accompli that Uselton is ticketed for short season ball next year.

      • John Dreker
        July 14, 2017 8:14 pm

        There is no word right now on whether he will be able to participate in the Fall Instructional League.. His HS team played 31 games this season. Everything else you said is correct, although there are plenty of possibilities for the WV outfield next year. If he’s ready for Low-A next year going into Opening Day, he will be there. Missing GCL games won’t change that.