11:20 am: DiGiovanna provides further updates on Simmons (via Twitter). The star shortstop has a bone bruise and left ankle sprain (in a different area of the ankle which sidelined him earlier in the season) and will be out “a least a couple of weeks,” according to manager Brad Ausmus.
10:36 am: Peña and Canning each have worrisome prognoses, DiGiovanna relays. Peña tore his ACL and is out for six to nine months, ending his season and putting his 2020 start in jeopardy. Canning, meanwhile, has inflammation in his throwing elbow. Fortunately, DiGiovanna adds that Canning’s UCL does not appear to be injured, so it seems he’ll avoid an especially serious absence.
9:38 am: The Angels have lost three key contributors, announcing the IL placements of Andrelton Simmons, Griffin Canning and Félix Peña, reports Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register (via Twitter). To replace that trio on the active roster, the club has recalled Wilfredo Tovar, Jared Walsh and Luke Bard, tweets Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times.
The news represents a devastating series of blows for the Halos, particularly the loss of the unmatchable Simmons. The defensive whiz was scratched from yesterday’s lineup with foot soreness, which has evidently proved more serious than initially hoped. It’ll be the second IL stint of the season for Simmons, who has otherwise put together a decent season. His .274/.315/.382 slash (88 wRC+) is unremarkable, but even that is reasonable when coupled with his otherworldly glove. Simmons also boasts one of the league’s lowest strikeout rates and had been a slightly above-average hitter over the past two seasons, so there was reason to believe he could offer even more offensively. That’ll be on hold for an undisclosed amount of time.
Peña left yesterday’s start with a sprained right knee, so it’s unsurprising to hear he’ll hit the shelf. He’s been serviceable in a swing role for the club this season, logging 96.1 innings with a 4.58 ERA. Peña’s strikeout, walk and ground ball rates are all solid but unremarkable.
The Canning news comes most surprisingly, as he just polished off a strong start against the Tigers Tuesday, although it explains the upcoming call-up of prospect Patrick Sandoval to start tomorrow night in his place. Canning, a former first-rounder, had some injury concerns as a draft prospect stemming from a heavy workload at UCLA, but his professional health record had been spotless until today. Regarded as a potential #3 starter as a prospect, Canning hasn’t been quite that good as a rookie but has nevertheless been dependable. Like Peña, Canning’s strikeout and walk numbers have hovered around average, although his 37.3% ground ball rate has led to some home run worries. Canning’s injury and prognosis aren’t yet clear.
Tovar is a utility infielder who can offer some shortstop assistance in Simmons’ absence. He’s never hit much, but he’ll be on hand to back up David Fletcher, who seems likely to handle the position in the near term. Walsh is a two-way player, a power bat who has raked in Triple-A this season and has come out of the Angel bullpen four times this year. He’s a uniquely versatile asset for the club. Bard, meanwhile, is a more traditional, fastball-slider reliever who’s been up-and-down during a challenging season.