Hunter Harvey update and reports on Chris Lee, Andrew Triggs and Parker Bridwell

After being shut down in September due to discomfort in his right elbow, Orioles pitching prospect Hunter Harvey has been cleared to do some light throwing.

Harvey is back home in North Carolina, but he figures to report to the Ed Smith Stadium complex in Sarasota later this winter.

Dr. James Andrews recommended on Oct. 5 that Harvey rest for four to six weeks before resuming a throwing program. His diagnosis matched the one that came earlier from team orthopedist Dr. Michael Jacobs.

Hunter Harvey throws black.pngHarvey probably won’t throw off a mound with high intensity until the middle of January, assuming there are no setbacks.

The Orioles are hoping that Harvey can avoid surgery on the elbow. He turns 21 on Dec. 9. Having a procedure now wouldn’t be major setback in his career. However, he will continue rehabbing.

The plan is to stick with a throwing program and try to get him back in competitive games. Harvey went on the disabled list with a strained right flexor mass that prevented him from pitching this season, and he was shut down in the fall instructional league with the elbow pain. He was removed from Peoria’s roster in the Arizona Fall League.

Harvey hasn’t pitched since July 2014 because of a strained flexor mass and a fractured shin. He was hit by a comebacker in Fort Myers in March.

The Orioles made Harvey the 22nd overall pick in the 2013 draft. He’s 7-6 with a 2.87 ERA in 25 starts over 113 innings in two minor league seasons.

It’s too soon for Harvey to be placed on the 40-man roster. The Orioles didn’t need to protect him before the Rule 5 draft, which leads to another seamless segue.

The roster filled up yesterday with the Orioles selecting the contracts of left-hander Chris Lee and right-handers Andrew Triggs and Parker Bridwell.

“We like the pitching depth we added to our roster today from the minors,” said executive vice president Dan Duquette in a text message. “Andrew Triggs had a terrific year at Bowie and Chris Lee made a good first impression after coming to the O’s in a trade. Parker Bridwell is an excellent athlete with very good secondary pitches who is coming into his own.

“All three could make a contribution to the 2016 club with some more seasoning.”

Brian Graham, the organization’s director of player development, further explained the appeal of each pitcher.

On Lee: “He got better as the year progressed. We saw a guy go from 88-90 mph to 93-96. By the end of instructional league, his fastball velocity had jumped up. I think a lot of it had to do with the change in his work program. He was in a piggyback situation in Houston, which I’ve seen be very effective, but when he came over here and went into a five-man rotation and had a bullpen in between his starts, I think his arm strength got better.

“He got better in Double-A and the velocity was better in Double-A versus Frederick, as well. At Frederick, it was 88-90 and when he got to Double-A and even in instructional league his velocity was consistently in the low to mid-90s.”

On Triggs: “He’s extremely competitive and he carried a 1.00 ERA the entire season, which is really hard to do. This is a guy with pitchability. He has a feel for pitching, he throws strikes, real good sinker - a plus sinker - and solid average to plus slider. And he pounds the strike zone.

“There’s deception because he throws across his body. He steps toward the right-handed hitter and throws across his body, so there’s definitely deception and there’s life on the fastball and the slider. And great makeup. Very competitive and great makeup.”

On Bridwell: “There’s life in his body and life in his arm. And he has a 65-70 changeup. So when you get a guy who’s a great athlete with plus velocity, real good sink - he’s 92-95 with good sink - and a plus changeup ...

“He still battles command of his fastball, but he’s a guy that we’ve developed and it’s good to see if he gets this opportunity.”

Shameless plug alert: I’m appearing on “Wall to Wall Baseball” from 11 a.m-12:30 p.m.

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