Rockies reliever Scott Oberg is on the 45-day injured list due to blood clots in his throwing arm, marking the third time blood clots have interrupted Oberg’s career. It remains to be seen if Oberg will be able to return during the 2020 season, though the right-hander told MLB.com’s Thomas Harding that he fully intends to keep pitching. “If this is what it’s going to have to be, it’s just another hurdle to overcome. I’ve dealt with the adversity road plenty of times,” Oberg said. After already undergoing three different procedures in the past, it isn’t yet certain if a fourth surgery will be required; Oberg has consulted with doctors and specialists about his latest issue, with more consultations planned for the coming week.
More from around the NL West…
- With Oberg and the struggling Wade Davis both on the IL, the Rockies’ search for a closer is still ongoing. It seemed as if Jairo Diaz was laying claim to the job, though after a rough outing (three walks, one hit, and two unearned runs in two-thirds of an inning) today, manager Bud Black told Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post and other media that the club has no “designated closer.” It seems likely that Diaz will still get some save chances as part of the Rockies’ closing committee, though Yency Almonte, Carlos Estevez, Daniel Bard, and possibly others could all figure into the ninth inning depending on the situation.
- Madison Bumgarner will throw a 50-pitch simulated game on Monday, a week after the southpaw was placed on the 10-day injured list due to a back strain. Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo told reporters (including Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic) that the simulated game “is a way for us to see how he looks, see how he feels and have him evaluate how his body feels and give us that information and determine what the next step is moving forward.” Piecoro notes that Bumgarner is still expected to miss at least one more start while on the IL, though the left-hander might not miss much beyond the 10-day minimum if he reports a clean bill after the sim game.
- Could Johnny Cueto be turning himself into a trade candidate? With the Giants in last place and looking like deadline sellers, John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle writes that Cueto could get some attention from teams looking for veteran pitching. Cueto has a 4.62 ERA, 1.73 K/BB rate, and 6.8 K/9 through 25 1/3 innings this season, some fairly middling numbers that ERA indicators (4.72 FIP, 5.55 xFIP, 5.28 SIERA) hint could or should be worse. On the plus side, Statcast metrics show that Cueto is doing a good job of limiting hard contact, and Cueto is averaging 91 mph on his fastball, roughly the same average velocity he was posting in the couple of seasons prior to his August 2018 Tommy John surgery. The Giants would likely have to eat some money to accommodate a trade, given that Cueto is owed $21MM in 2021, there is a $5MM buyout of his $22MM club option for 2022, and he is also owed the prorated remainder of his original $21MM salary for the rest of this season.