Morris with the Miami Marlins
|Miami Marlins – No. 57|
March 28, 1987 |
|September 14, 2012, for the Pittsburgh Pirates|
(through June 21, 2016)
|Earned run average||2.80|
Avery Bryan Morris (born March 28, 1987) is an American professional baseball pitcher for the Miami Marlins of Major League Baseball (MLB). Previously, he played in MLB for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Morris bats left-handed and throws right-handed.
Morris was drafted by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in the third round of the 2005 Major League Baseball Draft, but he did not sign with Devil Rays. He re-entered the draft and was chosen again in the first round, 26th overall, in the 2006 Major League Baseball Draft, by the Los Angeles Dodgers. Morris is currently represented by Jim Kuzmich, a sports and entertainment attorney located in Gilbert, Arizona.
Los Angeles Dodgers
In 2006, Morris played for the Dodgers affiliate, the Ogden Raptors of the Pioneer League He was voted by Baseball America as the top prospect for entire rookie-level Pioneer League. He missed the entire 2007 season recovering from Tommy John surgery. In 2008, Morris played for the Dodgers Single A affiliate, the Great Lakes Loons of the Midwest League. In July 2008, he was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates, as part of the three team trade that sent Jason Bay to the Boston Red Sox and Manny Ramirez to the Dodgers.
In July 2008, he was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates, as part of the three team trade that sent Jason Bay to the Boston Red Sox and Manny Ramirez to the Dodgers. Morris is considered the key prospect the Pirates received in the trade. He was immediately assigned to the Pirates then-Single A affiliate, the Hickory Crawdads of the South Atlantic League. In 2009, Morris was assigned to the Lynchburg Hillcats, the Pirates' Single A affiliate from 1995 to 2009. While in Lychburg, Morris posted a 4–9 record with a 5.57 ERA in 15 starts after spending 58 days on the disabled list with tendonitis in his right shoulder. During the Hillcats first round playoff game for the Carolina League title, he was the winning pitcher in Game 5 of the best-of-five series against Wilmington Blue Rocks. The Pirates suspended Morris in August 2009 for "unprofessionalism" after arguing umpire calls. Despite the struggles, the Pirates added Morris to the 40 man roster after the 2009 season to protect him from the 2009 Rule 5 Draft. In 2010, the Pirates and Cincinnati Reds swapped minor league franchises. As a result, the Reds took control of the Hillcats, while the Pirates received Cincinnati's Sarasota Reds. The Pirates then moved Sarasota's operations to nearby Bradenton, where the club was renamed the Bradenton Marauders. On April 8, 2010, Morris was the Opening Day starting pitcher for the Marauders during their inaugural game. In eight starts for Bradenton, Morris posted a 3–0 record and a 0.60 ERA, the lowest among starters in all of minor league baseball. He also limited opposing hitters to a .220 batting average while walking seven and striking out 40 in 442⁄3 innings. On May 16, 2010, Morris became the first Marauder to get promoted, when he was called up to the Pirates Double A affiliate, the Altoona Curve. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette later reported that Pirates general manager Neal Huntington, stated that Morris has a chance to land with Pittsburgh's Triple-A affiliate, the Indianapolis Indians, by August "if he can sustain what he's doing." Morris, was benched in Altoona by mid-season. After throwing 103 innings, he had shown signs of fatigue. The Pirates management wanted to limit Morris to around 130 innings. Pirates' GM, Neal Huntington stated that "Rather than limit his innings each start ... we felt it was good to take a couple starts off, tweak his delivery and then get him back out there." Huntington also added that he expects Morris to pitch again in 2010. Morris had a largely successful year in 2010. He stayed healthy for the entire season and threw for a career-high 1332⁄3 innings. In an interview with MLB.com, Morris stated that he talks to other pitchers for valuable tips on throwing, like most other young pitchers do, however he also talks a lot with catchers for their perspective on how they attack hitters. Morris attended the Pirates spring training camp in 2011, however he was reassigned to the Curve. He was ranked #6 on the Baseball America Pirates Top 10 Prospects list going into the 2011 season. However, Morris struggled as a starting pitcher with Altoona and was converted to relief. Morris became a dominating reliever, although he spent the entire 2011 season in Double-A, which, combined with his move to the bullpen, made his 2011 season very disappointing.
Morris began the 2012 season in the bullpen of the Triple-A Indianapolis Indians. He was recalled to the Pittsburgh Pirates for the first time on June 24, 2012. However, Morris did not have the opportunity to make his Major League debut, as he was optioned back to Indianapolis on June 25, 2012. He was recalled by the Pirates on September 10, 2012. On September 14, 2012, he made his major league debut, pitching a scoreless inning against the Chicago Cubs.
Morris was recalled by the Pirates on May 28, 2013 when José Contreras was placed on the disabled list. On June 20, 2013, Morris got his first career base hit off Cincinnati Reds pitcher Alfredo Simón.
- "Bryan Morris Stats". Baseball Almanac. Retrieved November 10, 2012.
- Smith, Bryan (September 22, 2006). "Pioner League Top 20 Prospects List".
- "Pirates' Morris begins to put strikes behind him". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. March 3, 2010.
- "Inaugural Season Marauders Players Revealed" (PDF). April 5, 2010.
- Williams, Tim (November 20, 2009). "40-Man Roster is set". Retrieved 20 November 2009.
- "April 8, 2010 Fort Myers Miracle vs Bradenton Marauders Box Score". April 8, 2010.
- Mayo, Jonathan (March 22, 2011). "Morris closest among Pirates' Top 10 Prospects". The Bradenton Herald. Retrieved April 13, 2011.
- Kovacevic, Dejan (January 12, 2011). "Pittsburgh Pirates Top 10 prospects".
- Rosati, Jim (June 19, 2011). "Bryan Morris moved to relief role".
- Brink, Bill (June 24, 2012). "Pirates claim Sutton, Morris in roster moves". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
- Kaplan, Jake (June 25, 2012). "Morris' stint in Majors over after one day".
- Meisel, Zack (September 10, 2012). "Bucs promote three, designate Meek for assignment".
- Brink, Bill (May 28, 2013). "Pirates put Contreras on DL, recall Morris". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved May 28, 2013.
- "Morris traded by Pirates to Marlins for draft pick". ESPN.com. Associated Press. June 1, 2014. Retrieved June 1, 2014.