The Pirates’ organization has been monitoring his progress, and they’ve liked what they have seen thus far, hence the early return.
Cherington told MLB.com, “Once we got as far out from the injury as we have, and it’s going to be two months or whatever, we just felt like we really needed to have almost a spring training progression.”
He added, “The last thing we wanted to do was sort of rush him back, and then something else happens because his body was just not ready.”
Cole Tucker, a close friend and teammate, said he is excited for his buddy to be back alongside himself as he spoke on the importance of his close friends’ return.
“I know the first two months of this season haven’t gone how he or anyone pictured, but he’s in a good spot, and he’s in a good headspace,” Tucker told MLB.com.
The hesitancy about the 24-year-old’s progress is valid as the Pirates have seen this since the initial wrist injury took place on April 4. Before the long-term IL designation, Pittsburgh placed KB on the 10-day injury list.
Hayes showed signs of recovery before suffering a setback after a cumbersome swing against celebrity competition in a centralized location in Detroit. After the incident, Hayes faced live at-bats with teammates before suffering more malaise in his wrist and hand.
Before starting the season, Hayes led the charge as the preseason favorite for the National League Rookie of the Year Award due to his hot finish of the pandemic-shortened season.
In 24 games, he batted .376 with 14 extra-base hits, 11 runs batted in, and five home runs. He also had a .442 on-base percentage, and a .682 slugging percentage with a 1.124 on-base plus slugging percentage.
Losers of seven of their last 10 games, the Bucs first two months of the season has them sputtering in the National League Central Division with a 20-32 record. So, the return of the franchise player could bring a much-needed spark at the plate and the field.
Baseball fans and enthusiasts are hoping a setback doesn’t occur for Hayes as the league and the team needs star players to move the game forward.
Look for Hayes to make his return Thursday as the Pirates host Jazz Chisholm and his Miami Marlins at PNC Park at 7:05 P.M. ET.
Ke’Bryan Hayes’ season started with a bang as he hit a home run on Opening Day to commemorate the launch of MLbbro.com. Not really, but that would have been something. He did become just the second Pirates rookie to homer on Opening Day, joining Johnny Ray who did it in 1982.
The baseball world anxiously anticipated seeing Hayes, who tore it up, hitting .367 with 6 homers in 90 at-bats during the COVID season, carry the Black and Yellow on his talented back in 2021.
The Son of Charlie is the only thing worth watching in Pittsburgh as the Pirates attempt to rebuild.
The town was in a frenzy when he set off the season with fireworks. Then went into a total funk just as quickly, when the young third baseman suffered a wrist injury and had to leave the game.
That was 17 games ago and the 9-10 Pirates have actually done a decent job treading water in his absence. The team’s success has heightened the enthusiasm around Bryant’s return even more. Pittsburgh is a franchise that some could say is cursed in many ways. Hard to argue that. But they’ve been able to accumulate some solid talent in the minors that they hope will pay dividends in the future.
The Pirates don’t suck, but I wouldn’t say that they are on a streak of good luck either because just as soon as Hayes was supposed to return, the 24-year-old reaggravated his wrist injury when taking swings as part of his rehab work. He’s headed back to Pittsburgh to have the injury re-evaluated.
Ke’Bryan Hayes is still one to watch. It’s just that right now, everyone is watching the progress of his wrist rather than the power he generates with the flick of them.
Just 12 innings into his 2021 season, rookie sensation Ke’Bryan Hayes finds himself on the 10-day injured list.
Hayes is the third prominent Black Knight to be sidelined with an injury early in the season. Rookie of The Year Kyle Lewis is resting a deep bone bruise and Toronto Blue Jays outfielder George Springer has a left oblique strain. Both are yet to take the field.
Hayes left Saturday’s game against the Chicago Cubs in the third inning with soreness in his left wrist. X-rays were negative, but an MRI revealed some inflammation, causing the Pittsburgh Pirates to place their prized prospect on the shelf for the time being.
Ke’Bryan Hayes’ injury to his left wrist is worse than it first appeared, and the #Pirates have placed him on the 10-day injured list. https://t.co/2e7RTay5D4
It appeared that Hayes first injured the wrist while drawing a walk during his first at-bat, facing the Cubs’ Jake Arietta. After fouling off a pitch, Hayes flexed his wrist before eventually drawing a walk.
“From talking to him when he was out at first, he caught the knob on the swing when he turned it over,” manage Derek Shelton said. “I guess the knob kinda got in his hand awkwardly.”
While on first, a pickoff attempt seemed to aggravate the injury more, but Hayes would come around to score the Pirates’ only run in a 1-5 loss.
Team doctors examined him again and decided to pull him in the third inning.
It’s a huge blow for the Pirates, who are in desperate need of the type of offense that Hayes provides.
Last season, Pittsburgh finished dead last in the National League in runs scored (219) and runs batted in (210).
In only 24 games, Hayes accounted for 15 percent of the team’s runs, and was responsible for five of the Pirates’ 20 homeruns.
It was his ability to hit to all fields with power, Gold Glove-level defense, and his baserunning instincts that had him atop many lists as the favorite for NL Rookie of the Year.
Despite playing in just 24 games in 2020, Ke'Bryan Hayes led all rookies with 1.9 WAR per @baseball_ref. He had a 55.4% hard-hit rate & 18.1% whiff rate — no qualified hitter had a HH% that high with a whiff% that low.
His mere presence in the lineup makes the Pirates better. Once he left the field Saturday, Pittsburgh could only scratch out four more hits over seven scoreless innings. Sunday, they dropped their second in a row to the Cubs after managing three runs on seven hits.
While the organization doesn’t feel that this injury will have a lasting impact on Hayes this season, it’s taking a higher than normal level of precaution with the player it intends to build around, especially when the Pirates aren’t expected to challenge for a postseason spot.
Better to slow down the ascension of one of baseball’s brightest young stars now, than to have it halted by a nagging injury that could lead to others.
The 24-year-old third baseman made his first Opening Day start one to remember; blasting a 410 foot shot off of Kyle Hendricks to give his Pittsburgh Pirates a 2-0 lead in a 5-3 win over the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field.
“It doesn’t surprise me,” Pirates pitcher Chad Kuhl said. “That guy hits everything hard. He’s just an unbelievable player. Really happy for him to start the season this way.”
Hayes has been killing the baseball throughout his rise to the Bigs and has been an impactful Black Knight ever since his September 1 call up in 2020.
In case you don’t know, or don’t remember, Ke’Bryan went deep in his first game with the Pirates. Coincidentally, that blast was also against the Cubs and also traveled well over 400 feet. He went 2-for-5 that night with a double, driving in two, and scoring three runs while playing immaculate defense in a tough, 8-7 loss in extra innings.
The first home run of Ke’Bryan Hayes’ Major League career. Ties the game at 6-6.
“That was unbelievable. It was outstanding,” Pirates manager Derek Shelton said that night. “He did things well in all three facets of the game.”
Ke’ Boogie is just the fourth Pittsburgh Pirate since 1901, and the first since 1922 to pick up multiple extra-base hits in his debut, and just the seventh Pirates player to go yard in his first game.
The son of former 14-year MLB world champion, Charlie Hayes, finished last season as a top-ten prospect in multiple publications after hitting an eye-opening .376; collecting 32 hits in just 24 games.
Twelve of those went for extra bases, including five homers. In fact, Hayes led all Pirates who played in at least 20 games in batting average, on base percentage, slugging and OPS.
The power and the eye were still there this Spring Training, with 10 extra-base knocks in 51 at-bats, and a healthy .431 average.
He had checked off every possible box on his way to this moment. Hayes was nearly a .300 hitter during his minor league career. After struggling to generate a lot of pop early on, Ke’Bryan has grown into a solid 5’10”, 205-pounder who still has room to build onto his frame.
It’s a huge responsibility to be the face of a franchise that has seen the likes of Roberto Clemente, Willie Stargell, Barry Bonds, and Andrew McCutchen carry the mantle in years past.
But Pirates don’t show fear, they create it. Opposing pitchers will go to sleep each worrying if they’ll be the next to be raided by the young man wearing number 13, and standing menacingly at the plate.
Brennen Davis, Xavier Edwards and some of the best young MLBbros in baseball will take the field for The 2021 SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game on Sunday at Coors Field in Denver — on the same day that the first round of the MLB Draft will be held in the same city.
Every year, the Futures Game is a showcase of the brightest young stars in baseball, the guys we really expect to carry the league going forward.
Our MLBbro and 2017 World Series MVP George Springer is one of the many notable alumni of this game.
Being selected to the game is truly considered an honor for young ballplayers, and gives our six young MLBbros (one won’t play due to injury) an opportunity to show the world the latest generation of Black ballplayers.
MLBbros Kyle Lewis, Ke’Bryan Hayes, Jo Addell, Touki Toussaint, Hunter Greene and Future Games MVP Taylor Trammell all played in the same Future Games in 2018, so the game definitely features the future stars of MLB.
Andre Jackson* – RHP – Los Angeles Dodgers (No. 27 prospect in Dodgers organization)
Bo Naylor – Cleveland Indians (No.3 prospect in Cleveland organization)
This was the toughest position to find an MLBBro to fill. Washington Nationals first baseman Josh Bell is the most notable Black first basemen of late, but as I searched through each team’s roster list there were no current first base prospects to be found.
I mentioned the need for defensive versatility before, and it seems like most black prospects are being placed where their athletic ability can be best used; shortstop or the outfield.
But with names like Frank Thomas, Willie McCovey, Eddie Murray, Dick Allen, Prince Fielder, Ryan Howard … I mean I could really do this for a while…There are countless Black power hitters who’ve manned first base in the Bigs, so there’s surely another in the pipeline. If I’ve overlooked anyone, let me know in the comments.