A rough start to the 2014 season just took another turn for Archie Bradley.
The D-backs' top prospect has been placed on Triple-A Reno's seven-day disabled list due to a mild flexor strain in his throwing elbow, the Major League club announced Tuesday. He will be shut down for two weeks and is expected to resume a throwing program once that period of rest has concluded.
Bradley was named the game's top pitching prospect by MLB.com in the offseason and was in the running for the fifth spot in the Arizona rotation during Spring Training. Instead, he was sent to Triple-A for his first try at the Pacific Coast League.
After allowing just two runs in his first two starts (12 innings), the 21-year-old right-hander's April headed south with each of his next three appearances, lasting no longer than 4 1/3 frames. His latest start was by far his most difficult. Bradley gave up five earned runs on seven hits and four walks and struck out three in four innings against Salt Lake.
The 2011 first-rounder was 1-4 with a 5.18 ERA with 23 strikeouts, 12 walks and 26 hits allowed in 24 1/3 innings through his first five starts with the Aces. He went 14-5 with a 1.84 ERA and 162 strikeouts in 152 innings between Class A Advanced Visalia and Double-A Mobile in 2013.
Bradley earned a 70 grade (read: well-above average) on his fastball in MLB.com's Prospect Watch scouting report to go with his above-average curveball (65) and average changeup (50).
Right-hander Lucas Harrell, who was acquired from the Astros on Monday, will slot into the Reno rotation in Bradley's absence. Harrell went 0-3 with a 9.49 ERA in three Major League starts for Houston before designated for assignment last week.