The Athletics have a ton of problems, as Craig mentioned this morning, but one of the most critical on-the-field aspects is the long-term prognosis for Brett Anderson.
Anderson underwent an MRI earlier this week after he was placed on the disabled list with left elbow soreness. The A’s haven’t disclosed the results of the exam, but Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that the southpaw is now scheduled to receive a second opinion Monday from Dr. James Andrews.
As I wrote in this space the other day, a visit to Dr. Andrews doesn’t always result in surgery, but remember that Anderson was sidelined twice last season with left elbow inflammation. While the Athletics dodged a bullet last year, they might not be so fortunate this time around.
Anderson, 23, has a 3.66 ERA over his first 62 starts in the big leagues. He is 3-6 with a 4.00 ERA and 61/25 K/BB ratio over his first 13 starts this season.
Free agent right-hander Henderson Alvarez signed a deal with the Tigres de Quintana Roo of the Mexican Baseball League earlier this week, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Friday. The righty wasn’t necessarily too fringey a player to hack it in the big leagues, but there were no MLB takers in attendance during his showcase in Venezuela last month and he clearly felt it best to try his luck elsewhere.
The 27-year-old’s last major league gig came with the Phillies, for whom he delivered a 4.30 ERA, 6.8 BB/9 and 3.7 SO/9 over 14 2/3 innings in 2017. While he’s not too far removed from his first and only All-Star bid in 2014, he was besieged by shoulder issues in 2015 and 2016 and underwent season-ending surgeries as a result.
That added injury risk, coupled with the fact that he hasn’t pitched more than 22 innings in a single season since 2014, may have been too much for major league teams to take on this spring. Assuming he steers clear of further injuries, however, a return to the majors may not be entirely out of the question in years to come.