The Pirates' agreement with left-hander Francisco Liriano, struck three weeks ago, appears to be off due to an injury suffered by the pitcher to his non-throwing right arm. According to a Major League source, Liriano suffered the unspecified injury in late December, shortly after he and the club had come to terms on a two-year, $12.75 million contract. The injury is serious enough to have precluded Liriano from traveling from his home in the Dominican Republic to Pittsburgh to undergo the prerequisite physical to make the agreement official.
The Pirates are believed to be in continuing talks with the Liriano camp, likely trying to negotiate new terms. General manager Neal Huntington said the club continues "to have dialogue with Francisco's representatives, but there is nothing to announce at this time." The club never made any official announcement regarding the 29-year-old left-hander, thus it didn't feel any need to backtrack upon disclosure of the injury. "We announce and acknowledge transactions when they are official," Huntington said. "News of any agreement never came from us." Liriano was expected to fill a spot in the middle of the Pirates' rotation, behind A.J. Burnett and lefty Wandy Rodriguez, and ahead of James McDonald. He went 6-12 in 2012, splitting the season between the Twins and the White Sox. He has a career record of 53-54, including seasons of 12-3 in 2006 and 14-10 in 2010, both with Minnesota.
Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.