Less than three weeks after undergoing surgery for testicular cancer, Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Jameson Taillon made a rehab start for Class AA Altoona on Sunday. The 25-year-old right-hander struck out six and allowed one hit and one walk on 47 pitches over three scoreless innings.
“It was therapeutic,” Taillon told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “The pitching mound — not to sound corny — is where I feel most comfortable. That’s where I spend a lot of my time. That’s my job.”
Taillon, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2010 MLB draft, was placed on the 10-day disabled list with groin discomfort after allowing six runs in a loss to the Reds on May 3. Five days later, he underwent surgery to remove a cancerous lump. Taillon said the timetable for his return was uncertain following his surgery, but he took a major step toward rejoining Pittsburgh’s rotation Sunday.
“It’s not a major surgery,” said Taillon, who underwent Tommy John surgery in April 2014. “They didn’t cut through any muscle. I feel good. I think it’s the right thing to do. It just depends on the person. There’s a protocol for Tommy John surgery. There’s a book on it, and people do the same thing. For something like this, everyone is going to react differently. There’s no playbook for it. This is our path.”
FIVE strikeouts for @JTaillon19 through the first two innings
Off to the third. Still scoreless. pic.twitter.com/rK65CF8K0x
— Altoona Curve (@AltoonaCurve) May 28, 2017
Taillon, who is scheduled to throw a bullpen session in Pittsburgh on Tuesday, is 2-1 with a 3.31 ERA and 30 strikeouts in 35 1/3 innings in the majors this season.