Colin Moran misses 3rd straight start; Pirates get good news-bad news on injured pitchers

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Jun. 16—Colin Moran remains day to day with lower back tightness, but Pittsburgh Pirates manager Derek Shelton said he's "confident we can avoid" having to place the first baseman on the 10-day injured list.

"We'll get him out in the cage here in a little bit, see where he's at, how he's moving," Shelton said. "He was moving a little bit better (Tuesday). Hoping that continues."

Moran was not in the starting lineup for Wednesday's game at the Washington Nationals, missing his third consecutive start since suffering back spasms on Sunday at Milwaukee. Phillip Evans is scheduled to start at first base, while Gregory Polanco batted in Moran's cleanup spot.

Pirates director of sports medicine Todd Tomczyk provided some good news-bad news injury scenarios for the pitching staff:

—Left-hander Steven Brault (left lat strain) started a side progression and is scheduled to throw 30 pitches on Thursday. Depending on how he responds to that workload, the Pirates will progress from another side session to have Brault throw a live batting practice and then a simulated game.

"So he is making strides in his rehab down in Bradenton," Tomczyk said, warning that Brault won't be back in the majors for at least a month. "He's definitely trending. He's not going to be back before the All-Star break, but I would envision potentially late July possibly if everything goes as planned."

—Diagnostic exams and testing by team physicians confirmed that right-hander Trevor Cahill reaggravated his low-grade left calf strain. He returned to Pittsburgh to be examined by team physicians.

"He is undergoing treatments only at this time," Tomczyk said. "The plan is for him to be reassessed by the medical staff on Friday, upon the team's return and ramp up a throwing program from there, hopefully."

—Right-hander Luis Oviedo (left quad strain), acquired via trade through the Rule 5 Draft, has resumed throwing both on flat ground and off the slope, but the Pirates are being cautious and using a "tempered progression" with his running.

—After receiving a second opinion from Dr. Neal ElAttrache, right-hander Jose Soriano had Tommy John revision surgery performed Tuesday in Los Angeles. Soriano, the top pick in the Rule 5 Draft, will be out of baseball activities for at least 16 months.

"Unfortunately after our initial examinations by our physicians in Pittsburgh, that was the direction we were heading, and in collaboration with Jose and his representatives, we all felt it was best to go back to the Kerlan Jobe Clinic, who performed the first surgery," Tomczyk said, noting that Dr. ElAtrache did not perform Soriano's first surgery but did the revision. "Those are the physicians that know his particular arm the best. Unfortunately this was the outcome, but last night when he woke up from the surgery is Day 1 of the recovery, and we're here to support Jose on that journey. ... There are successes from these revision surgeries, and we're going to work hard and do everything in our power to provide a platform and the opportunity for Jose to come back from this."

In the minor leagues, Tomczyk said Double-A Altoona infielder Ji-Hwan Bae won't require surgery after sustaining a Grade 1 MCL sprain of his left knee after colliding with a teammate during a game but will be out four to six weeks. Tomczyk also said that he anticipates that High-A Greensboro infielder Nick Gonzales (fractured finger), the No. 7 overall pick of the 2020 MLB Draft, will return to full baseball activities later this month.

Kevin Gorman is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Kevin by email at kgorman@triblive.com or via Twitter .