Steven Brault was removed in the fifth inning of his start vs. the Brewers Friday night with what is being described as "left shoulder discomfort."
Facing Orlando Arcia to lead off the top of the fifth, Brault threw a fourth ball well wide of the plate. Immediately after the walk, Brault motioned for the trainer to come to the mound and have a look.
Nothing beyond that preliminary description of "discomfort" is confirmed at this time. We will have more updates from PNC Park as they become available.
If serious, the injury could be devastating for the Pirates. Losing a starting pitcher is never ideal, but the Pirates are already down Jameson Taillon, who is on the IL with a right elbow flexor tendon strain. In Taillon's absence, Brault has emerged as not just a serviceable starter but as one of the Pirates' more reliable pitching options.
Friday against the Brewers, Brault worked through four innings, allowing three hits and one earned run while striking out four and walking two. The lone run came courtesy of Jesus Aguilar, who drove in Yasmani Grandal from third with a single in the fourth inning.
Should Brault miss time on the IL, he'll join Taillon, Trevor Williams, Chris Archer and Jordan Lyles as Pirates starters who have missed time this season due to injury. Of the team's opening-day five-man rotation, only Joe Musgrove has remained healthy in 2019.
Stay tuned for more updates after the game, as Clint Hurdle and potentially Brault will each be available to speak with the media.