UPDATE: Just kidding, y'all, Kevin Gausman doesn't have any pulled muscles. He actually has pneumonia. He's still on the disabled list, but this is good news. Still no word on how long he'll be about, but it certainly won't be as long as if he had a strained muscle. One time I thought I pulled a muscle in my back from coughing, but it turned out I had a blood clot in my lung. So both Kevin Gausman and I thought we pulled muscles but turned out our lungs were the culprit. Was that interesting? At any rate, get better soon Kevin!
Gausman's MRI showed the pneumonia. Nothing else. He has been sick for a while, couldn't shake a cough.— Brittany Ghiroli (@Britt_Ghiroli) May 2, 2014
Kevin Gausman was scratched from his start today with AAA Norfolk, and the beat reporters jumped on it in Showalter's press conference as a possible promotion for Goose. The Orioles will play the Twins tonight with an exhausted bullpen, and Evan Meek was optioned last night after the game. Unfortunately, a promotion isn't in the cards for Gausman yet. An MRI yesterday that confirmed that he has a strained intercostal muscle that could land him on the disabled list.
It's an unfortunate turn of events for the Orioles and Gausman, as it's been almost accepted that Gausman will be in Baltimore at some point this season. It's not so much a big deal regarding the roster move the Orioles will make today to fill the roster spot of the recently optioned Evan Meek, because Gausman isn't slated to be a relief pitcher and if he were uninjured and got the promotion, it would either be short lived or else it would risk his progression as a starter. But if this injury takes significant time to heal and then he still has to rehab to get back to game shape, that could certainly impede his path back to the majors.
It's always hard to decipher the stats from the minor leagues, but while Gausman hasn't given up many runs in his five starts so far this year, he has given up quite a few walks. That doesn't necessarily mean anything depending on what he's been working on, but it is also worth noting that he hasn't pitched more than five innings nor thrown more than 75 pitches in a game. There is speculation that's to save his workload so that he can pitch deep into the season with the Orioles, but I would personally be happier if he started going deeper into games before being put into a major league rotation.
At any rate, that's all on hold for now while Gausman deals with his injury. They haven't yet decided to place him on the disabled list, so that gives me some hope that the results of the MRI showed something very minor. Fingers crossed that's the case and that he'll be back in action soon.
UPDATE: Check out Roch Kubatko's blog for more details on Gausman's injury, but the short story is that he apparently injured it coughing. You hate to see that. There is also passing mention of a blister on his finger that I hadn't heard about before.