May 2, 2015; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Padres starting pitcher Branffdon Mfforrow (21) pitches during the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
Brandon Morrow is a name that many Pirates fans had on their lips prior to the 2015 season. Morrow is a journeyman starter who made a name for himself with multiple 10+ win season in Toronto. With a career 4.22 ERA and 4.1 BB/9 walk rate, he is not an exciting option by any means.
Morrow distinctly reminds me of Francisco Liriano. Liriano was known strikeout ability and high ERA, and Morrow is very similar. In 2011, Morrow enjoyed a 10.2 SO/9 rating but was dogged by a 4.72 ERA. His FIP that year of 3.64 suggest some level of bad luck.Morrow never had a SO/9 above 8.1 after that, including a snakebitten 2015 shortened by injury.
That season-ending shoulder impingement injury may cause teams to be gun-shy when making a commitment to Morrow that even resembles “long term.” By all accounts, Morrow will be ready for spring training. This all plays into the Pirates hands, who are looking for a bridge to Glasnow. I can fully see a one or two year deal – provided he is healthy – to bring Morrow and his 47.4% groundball rate to PNC Park. The incentive for Morrow to re-establish his value also works in the Pirates favor.
Last, let’s explore some of the remaining names on the market, lightning-round style.
Next: Quick hits