Brian Matusz’s miserable season continued yesterday, as he served up three homers and allowed six runs in 5.1 innings against the Yankees, falling to 1-7 with a 9.07 ERA in nine starts.
Matusz had a very promising rookie season last year and the 24-year-old left-hander looked like a big part of the Orioles’ long-term plans, but he missed the first two months of this season with an intercostal strain and then pitched his way back to the minors once healthy.
When the Orioles called him back up two weeks ago they seemed optimistic that he’d worked out some mechanical kinks and rediscovered his lost velocity, but in three starts since then Matusz has allowed 18 runs in 16 innings while opponents bat .348 with a 1.085 OPS.
He’ll get a chance to improve his numbers down the stretch, but right now the former No. 4 overall pick has joined Chien-Ming Wang in 2009 as the only pitchers since 2005 to throw at least 40 innings with an ERA above 9.00. Wang didn’t get a chance to improve on his 9.64 ERA late in the season because he underwent shoulder surgery from which he’s just now getting back on track.
The Dodgers announced on Thursday that the club activated pitcher Grant Dayton from the 10-day disabled list and designated pitcher Sergio Romo for assignment.
Dayton, 29, went on the disabled list earlier this month with neck stiffness. He’ll resume with a 3.63 ERA and a 20/12 K/BB ratio in 22 1/3 innings.
Romo, 34, signed a one-year, $3 million deal with the Dodgers in February. It didn’t really work out, as the right-hander posted a 6.12 ERA with a 31/12 K/BB ratio in 25 innings. His peripherals are still decent, so it wouldn’t be surprising if a team in need of a bullpen arm makes a deal with the Dodgers within the week.
MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that Royals pitcher Nate Karns underwent surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome on Wednesday. He’s expected to be ready for spring training next year. Karns went on the disabled list in May with an elbow injury and didn’t make much progress.
The Royals acquired Karns from the Mariners in January in exchange for outfielder Jarrod Dyson. Over eight starts and one relief appearance, the 29-year-old right-hander compiled a 4.17 ERA and a 51/13 K/BB ratio in 45 1/3 innings.
Karns will enter his first of three years of arbitration eligibility after the season, so he’ll be under the Royals’ control through 2020.