May 20, 2011
Transaction Analysis Blog
Oakland Swaps Six Pitchers
Nothing to see here, folks, just your typical transaction rearranging six pitchers to the disabled list, Triple-A, and the major league bullpen.
Losing McCarthy and Ross will test the depth of one of the game’s best rotations. McCarthy has been the image of in-game durability as he is completing more than seven innings per start and holds the best strikeout-to-walk ratio of any Athletics pitcher. The right shoulder has been a sore spot—pun semi-intended—for McCarthy over the last few years and it’s bothering him again here. As one of the game’s nice early season stories and one of the better tweeters, you have to hope McCarthy can make a quick recovery without missing significant time as he did the past two seasons.
Ross’s delivery is synonymous with “complex” and many have written about its likelihood to cause him an injury. An oblique injury is an injury, albeit not one of the biggies associated with strenuous deliveries. The tall righty opened the season in the A’s pen but moved into the rotation with some recent success. Ross even managed seven innings and eight strikeouts against the White Sox in the start before suffering the injury. He will be out through at least the beginning of June.
If there is a sliver of good fortune for the A’s here—and face it, it’s minimal—McCarthy and Ross were the last two starters used. That means the A’s can carry a nine-man bullpen through the end of the weekend, giving them time to assess the trade market and their internal options while also reinforcing a recently taxed bullpen. Having two of Bobby Cramer, Josh Outman, or offseason waiver claim Guillermo Moscoso join the rotation next week seems to be the most likely solution (as they are on the 40-man roster and in the Triple-A rotation).