It was supposed to happen two years ago.
The Phils' 3rd round pick in the 2011 draft had raced his way through Clearwater and Reading to put up a 3.35 ERA in 26 starts, notching 169 strikeouts and just 39 walks in 158.2 innings in 2012. At 22, he was seen as one of the most advanced pitching prospects in the organization, and a call-up to the big club seemed imminent for sometime in 2013. Here's how he looked back then.
However, as happens with pitchers, Morgan suffered a setback at AAA Lehigh Valley the following season, posting a 4.04 ERA in 71 1/3 innings, with just 49 strikeouts and 26 walks before an injury sidelined him after 18 starts. Surgery on his left throwing shoulder forced him to miss all of last year.
But now, after a long road traveled, Morgan will make his Major League debut for the Phillies on Sunday, taking the place of the injured Jerome Williams in the rotation.
The 25-year-old Morgan went 0-6 for the Iron Pigs this year with a 4.74 ERA in 13 starts. In 68 1/3 innings he has struck out 33 and walked 27. Not a great ratio, but as the always-knowledgeable Matt Winkleman notes...
Vintage Morgan was 6 FB 6 SL 5+ CH 5 CB, this Morgan is not that, but velocity almost back and slider is almost there— Matt Winkelman (@Matt_Winkelman) June 19, 2015
As a result, the Phillies will have to make a roster move, which they say will happen Sunday morning. That could mean the end of Sean O'Sullivan's time with the team, or the release of newly-signed Kevin Correia. The team chose Morgan over Severino Gonzalez, the 22-year-old who struggled in his five starts this year.
The Phillies have Chad Billingsley working his way back from an injury, but is still two or three rehab starts away from returning. And David Buchanan could begin a rehab assignment soon as well.
After Aumont makes his start tonight, Morgan would become the 11th different starting pitcher used by the team this season.