SUNDAY: Manager Ned Yost announced Sunday that Duffy has a “low grade pronator strain,” per Dodd, who notes that the Royals are hopeful he’ll only sit out one start. In a worst-case scenario, Duffy would miss three weeks (Twitter link).
SATURDAY: The Royals will place left-hander Danny Duffy on the 10-day DL due to a left elbow impingement (Rustin Dodd of the Kansas City Star was among those to report the news). Lefty Onelki Garcia’s contract has been purchased from Triple-A in a corresponding roster move, with Bubba Starling going to the 60-day DL to create 40-man roster space, as per MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan. Eric Skoglund, another southpaw, will fill Duffy’s spot in the rotation and start tomorrow’s game.
This is the second time Duffy has hit the disabled list this season, as the southpaw previously missed over five weeks due to an oblique strain. No timetable is yet known for Duffy’s elbow issue, though any time missed is a big setback for a Royals club that is battling for the postseason (entering today 1.5 games behind the Twins for the second wild card spot).
Duffy has a 3.78 ERA, 3.22 K/BB rate and 7.97 K/9 over 131 innings this season. While obviously Duffy and K.C. were hoping for better health in the first season of Duffy’s five-year, $65MM extension signed last January, the lefty has been worth 3.1 fWAR this year, already more than the 2.8 fWAR he generated over 179 2/3 IP in his breakout 2016 season. Duffy is achieving quality results despite losing just under two miles per hour in fastball velocity (down to 92.9mph) from 2016, though he has also thrown his fastball much less than usual while increasing usage of his slider, changeup and curveball.
Garcia signed a minor league deal with the Royals in the offseason, and he has a 4.75 ERA, 7.3 K/9 and 2.09 K/BB rate over 85 1/3 Triple-A frames this season, holding left-handed hitters to a .653 OPS. Garcia’s only previous big league experience came in 2013, when he pitched in three games (1 1/3 innings) for the Dodgers.