As recently as Friday, the Pittsburgh Pirates seemed to have cause for optimism over the health of starter Wandy Rodriguez. Not any more. George von Benko of MLB.com reports that the Pirates have decided to shut down Rodriguez for the remainder of the season as the left-hander continues to suffer from pain while pitching. Manager Clint Hurdle explained the decision:
"We had Wandy in here with GM Neal Huntington, myself, trainer Todd Tomczyk and [Latin American strength and conditioning coordinator] Kiyoshi Momose just to make sure we didn't lose anything in translation," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "It was a hard meeting, and we're going to shut Wandy down for his benefit and for our benefit. He's put so much into this, he's worked so very hard to try and get into a position to pitch again, because of the want to help the team, but he continues to pitch with pain and discomfort, and we're going to turn our focus to 2014 and let him heal."
Dr James Andrews was apparently consulted on the issue, and although he recommended a cortisone injection, Rodriguez decided he'd rather try to get healthy for 2014 than pitch through the problem.
"Dr. Andrews recommended a cortisone injection," Rodriguez explained. "But it was up to me and it was my decision. I won't take the injection because cortisone is only to kill the pain, but not heal the injury."
Still locked in a tense three-way battle for the NL Central title, the Pirates would have appreciated a boost to their pitching staff but it's clearly proving to be too short a timeframe for Rodriguez to overcome.
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