All this week, Pirates fans have been waiting with bated breath to hear that finally, finally, shortstop Oneil Cruz would be brought back to the show.
Instead, there was this:
Canaan Smith-Njigba suffered what is effectively a broken right wrist. He’s going on the 60-day IL. Up is Cam Vieaux, who will be making his MLB debut.— Jason Mackey (@JMackeyPG) June 17, 2022
The official name for Smith-Njigba’s injury is “non-displaced fracture of the scaphoid bone in his right wrist.” A helpful diagram:
We try to be educational here at Bucs Dugout.
The 28-year-old Vieaux .is a southpaw pitcher with a 3-0 record in 18 appearances at Indianapolis this season. He has a 2.28 ERA in 27.2 innings pitched, with 23 strikeouts and a 0.90 WHIP. This was his first professional season pitching mostly in relief. Drafted in the sixth round of the 2016 draft out of Michigan State, he made steady progress through the Bucs’ minor-league system but has bounced between Indy and Altoona for a couple of years.
Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette had this to say on Twitter:
Maybe it’s stating the obvious, maybe not. But I feel very encouraged that we’ll see Oneil Cruz before the end of the homestand.— Jason Mackey (@JMackeyPG) June 17, 2022
I can hear the yells of “well, why aren’t they bringing him up NOW?!?!?”, particularly considering the schlubby shortstop play as of late (*cough*Castillo*cough*). Maybe it’s Cruz’s current .238 batting average. Maybe it’s the whispers that his glove isn’t up to the speed the Pirates would like. Maybe it’s the news that Kevin Newman is getting pretty close to his rehab stints. Maybe Ben Cherington just wants to see Pirates fans’ heads explode.
I’m not saying Mackey’s wrong, but before this came out he was saying on Twitter that he was hearing Monday.
All we know here at BD is that CruzWatch continues.