Harrison undergoes thumb surgery
Top prospect Taillon also has surgery for an inguinal hernia
PITTSBURGH -- The Pirates will be without their leadoff man and do-it-all defender for about two months, as Josh Harrison underwent surgery on his left thumb Wednesday.
Harrison was placed on the 15-day disabled list Monday with what the Pirates initially labeled a left thumb injury as they awaited a second opinion. That opinion came Wednesday, on Harrison's 28th birthday, when he was seen by Dr. Thomas Graham, who confirmed the initial diagnosis of a torn ulnar collateral ligament in Harrison's left thumb.
The typical recovery time from Harrison's injury is approximately seven weeks. That would put Harrison in line to return in late August, at the earliest.
For comparison's sake, Pittsburgh first baseman/outfielder Andrew Lambo had the same operation on his right thumb on May 28, 2014, and returned to action on July 3, 2014.
Harrison sustained the injury on Sunday while sliding awkwardly into second base. Named to the National League All-Star team a year ago, Harrison signed a four-year contract extension in April and hit .279/.313/.384 with four home runs, 22 RBIs and nine steals in 75 games this season.
"It's always tough to sit out. But we've got a good team," Harrison said Monday. "[Pirates manager Clint Hurdle] has said it before: It's going to take us all."
Another prominent part of the Pirates' future went under the knife on Wednesday, as pitching prospect Jameson Taillon underwent surgery to repair an inguinal hernia.
Taillon, the Bucs' No. 2 prospect, was working his way back from Tommy John surgery last year in extended spring training. He was expected to advance to one of Pittsburgh's Minor League affiliates when abdominal soreness halted his progress on June 23.
The typical recovery time from Taillon's injury is approximately eight weeks.