Now that the Pittsburgh Pirates have agreed to sign pitcher Francisco Liriano to a reworked contract that could pay him as much as $12.75 million over the course of two years, it is time to unravel the mystery of what exactly happened to Liriano and answer the question of if he will be able to pitch by the time pitchers and catchers report in just under three weeks.
Liriano signed the original two-year contract with the Bucs right before Christmas and it never became official until Monday because of an undisclosed right arm fracture that he suffered in late December.
It was never released how exactly the injury happened, but according to MLB.com beat writer Tom Singer and the newspaper El Caribe:
The mystery of Francisco Liriano’s broken right arm received some unsubstantiated clarification recently with a newspaper in his native Dominican Republic reporting he suffered it in a bathroom fall.
According to elcaribe.com.do, the newspaper’s website, Liriano fell days after the Dec. 21 agreement on his original two-year, $12.75 million contract with the Pirates, fracturing the humerus bone in the upper arm.
Citing a “source close to the player,” the report said Liriano’s right arm is in a cast. The report included no other details as to where or how exactly the left-handed pitcher had fallen.
Liriano is a left-handed pitcher, so the injury to his non-throwing arm shouldn’t prevent him from being ready for Opening Day, as long as he doesn’t have any more bathroom slips, although that story hasn’t been confirmed.