A's Pitching Prospect James Kaprielian to Undergo MRI on Right Shoulder

The injury bug has hit James Kaprielian yet again. 

A's manager Bob Melvin told reporters Sunday that the long-hyped pitching prospect experienced shoulder discomfort in a bullpen session on Friday. The right-hander will be behind schedule in spring training when pitchers and catchers report on Monday. 

"It looked like he was throwing good before that, but just a little something came up, so I think we're going to have him get an MRI," Melvin said. "So he'll probably be a little bit behind. It looked like he was going to be a full-go and then the last bullpen he felt that."

Once he gets the MRI, the severity of the injury will be known, but nonetheless, this is another tough setback for Kaprielian. He hasn't pitched in professional game since 2016 when he underwent Tommy John surgery. 

Kaprielian, who turns 25 on March 2, was rehabbing from the injury when the A's traded for him from the Yankees in the 2017 Sonny Gray deal. He remained sidelined last season as well while dealing with shoulder soreness, but did pitch in an instructional game last October.

The 6-foot-4, 200-pounder was selected with the No. 16 overall pick in the 2015 MLB Draft by the Yankees. Since then, the UCLA product has only pitched in 15 minor league games. 

[RELATED: A's starting rotation is still a concern as spring training begins]

He is 2-2 with a 2.45 ERA in his minor league career. Despite his small sample size, Kaprielian was named the No. 58 prospect in baseball by MLB Pipeline before the 2017 season.

The A's added Kaprielian to the 40-man roster to protect him from the Rule 5 Draft this past offseason. Once he's healthy, he will be in big league camp and join a big group of talented young arms trying to overcome injuries.

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