Jameson Taillon was expected to begin the season at triple-A as the Pittsburgh Pirates’ top pitching prospect.
That scenario has been delayed by at least two weeks, with the Canadian right-hander unsure when he’ll throw again at full health.
Taillon, 22, will seek a second opinion for “at little bit of discomfort” in his right elbow Monday, visiting Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles, according to Pirates Prospects.
A recent MRI exam showed no ligament damage but Taillon will be shut down for two weeks before re-evaluating the injury should Monday’s test not reveal any further damage.
“We’ll just listen to [the body] and whenever the elbow says it’s ready to go, we’ll ramp it up,” said Taillon, who sports a 3.38 earned-run average through two spring training appearances.
“The early word is there’s a little inflammation and a bone there in my elbow. Nothing too, too serious.”
Following a March 19 appearance in which the velocity on Taillon’s pitches was up and he threw well, he woke up in the middle of the night with “pain that I had never felt before.”
Doctors reported the elbow ligament was strong after the first MRI and earlier this week Taillon reported feeling better after rehabbing with ice and anti-inflammatory methods.
The second overall pick in the 2010 amateur draft, Taillon pitched 26 games (25 starts) last season at double- and triple-A with a combined 5-10 record and 3.73 ERA while striking out 143 batters in 147 1/3 innings.
Well known for his fastball/curveball combination, Taillon’s coaches encouraged the six-foot-five, 225-pounder to throw at least 20 changeups each start with the thought he’ll need three strong pitchers to succeed at the major league level.
Taillon, who was born in Winter Haven, Fla., to Canadian parents and raised in Texas, holds dual citizenship.
Many of his family members, both immediate and extended, are from Canada.