Pirates’ Felipe Vazquez up to speed in return from injury scare |

Pirates’ Felipe Vazquez up to speed in return from injury scare

Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review
Pirates closer Felipe Vazquez celebrates with catcher Elias Diaz after defeating the White Sox, 3-2, Wednesday, May 16, 2018, at PNC Park.

Eleven pitches to three batters: 10 strikes, three outs. Seven fastballs averaging 100 mph and four changeups averaging 90.4 mph.

Judging by his outing Tuesday, it’s safe to say closer Felipe Vazquez is OK.

“How about that? Highest velocity all season,” Pirates director of sports medicine Todd Tomczyk said. “Credit to (head trainer Bryan Housand, strength coach Jim Malone, assistant trainer Ben Potenziano and physical therapist Otis Fitzgerald). Whatever they did, I think we need the magic potion for any pitcher.”

Vazquez was shut down for Monday’s game after he left Sunday’s game complaining of discomfort in his left arm. On Monday, Vazquez said he felt a pop in his arm and lost feeling in his ring finger, but he was tossing later in the day.

The Pirates eased him back into action Tuesday in a non-save situation (they trailed by four runs when Vazquez pitched the ninth).

“No problems at all,” Vazquez said. “I was probably just a little scared of what happened because I didn’t know.

“So just to be back there and make sure everything was OK, actual game speed, it was good. Everything felt normal.”

Chris Adamski is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at [email protected] or via Twitter @C_AdamskiTrib.

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