It turns out the Charlie Morton situation was not what people thought it might have been.
Morton appeared to get tagged in the knee by a sniper while running to first base during Saturday's game against the Brewers in Milwaukee. Going down hard, he did manage to rise to his feet on his own, but needed help getting off the field. After the game, Morton reminded reporters he'd had a hamstring issue in 2009, and the general thought was that, assuming it was as normal as everyone was considering, Morton was looking at something close to a two-week healing period.
Following Morton's scheduled MRI on Monday, Pete Mackanin didn't like the results he saw.
Charlie Morton's MRI (hammy) "wasn't as good as we were hoping," Mackanin said. Phils will give it a couple more days to decide what's next.— Ryan Lawrence (@ryanlawrence21) April 26, 2016
"Not as good," it turns out, means "really, very bad." Morton's left hamstring is torn, requiring him to undergo season-ending surgery, ballooning the presumed recovery period to six to eight months. The 32-year-old made four starts for the Phillies, accruing a 4.15 ERA with 19 SO and 8 BB in 17.1 IP.
It is very bad news for Morton, a pitcher who has a generally difficult time staying healthy for entire seasons, and it's not great new for the Phillies either, who now have to fill a gap in the rotation. Adam Morgan is the lead candidate for the role. The young southpaw has performed well in Lehigh Valley, with a 3.57 ERA through three starts. He leads the IronPigs in strikeouts with 20, while allowing only four walks.