The Rockies have placed righty Adam Ottavino on the 10-day DL with a left oblique strain, per a club announcement and as Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post reports. He’ll be replaced for the time being by righty Scott Oberg.
Ottavino has more or less been unhittable this year after a rough 2017 season. Through 28 1/3 innings, the 32-year-old has allowed only eight base hits to opposing hitters. He has been scored upon only three times and carries a strong 45:10 K/BB ratio. Ottavino has recorded a dozen holds while working in front of closer Wade Davis.
At the moment, it’s not know how long Ottavino will be down. The team hopes that it’s not a severe injury, per Saunders, though clearly the organization has decided to take a cautious course with a reliever who has become an integral part of the late-inning unit.
It’s unfortunate timing regardless of how long Ottavino will miss, as the Rockies are entering consecutive series against two teams (the Giants and Dodgers) chasing them in the NL West standings. The Rox have other veteran setup options, of course, but none are performing anywhere close to Ottavino’s standard thus far.
Of course, the more important matter remains the long-term outlook. Oblique injuries can be nettlesome, though that’s all the more reason to nip this one in the bud.
For his part, the 28-year-old Oberg will look to improve upon the generally middling work he has turned in at the MLB level to this point in his career. He owns a 5.15 ERA in 153 2/3 innings, with 7.6 K/9 against 4.2 BB/9 but also a healthy 55.3% groundball rate.