Athletics right-hander Andrew Triggs has undergone surgery to repair the labrum in his left hip yesterday, the Athletics announced on Friday (Twitter link via MLB.com’s Jane Lee). Triggs had previously told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle that he if he ultimately had the surgery, the expectation was that he’d be throwing off a mound in time for Spring Training 2018 (Twitter link).
It’s a tough break for the 28-year-old Triggs, who was sensational through his first eight starts in 2017 before turning in uneven results the rest of the way. Through mid-May, Triggs had worked to a 2.12 ERA with 6.8 K/9, 2.3 BB/9 and a 54 percent ground-ball rate, but he allowed six or more runs in each of his final four starts before landing on the disabled list due to hip pain that will now ultimately cost him the remainder of his season.
An unheralded waiver claim out of the Orioles organization, Triggs quietly emerged as a promising starting option for the A’s last season when he pitched 56 1/3 strong innings. Though his 4.31 ERA didn’t appear all that encouraging on the surface, Triggs averaged 8.8 K/9 against 2.1 BB/9 with a 51 percent ground-ball rate as a rookie in 2016, prompting metrics like FIP (3.20), xFIP (3.29) and SIERA (3.29) to forecast considerable improvement in 2017.
Triggs will spend the remainder of the season on the 60-day DL (once the A’s need to place him there to open a 40-man spot, that is), and will hope for better health in 2018. He’ll gain a full year of service time this season, pushing his career total to one year, 123 days. That trajectory means that he’s unlikely to be eligible for arbitration until after the 2019 season (post-2018 is possible, but unlikely, and will depend on the Super Two cutoff). The A’s can control Triggs via arbitration through the 2022 campaign.