Angels left-hander C.J. Wilson has allowed 10 runs in seven innings since returning from a month on the disabled list with hip and ankle injuries.
Wilson looked bad last night against the Dodgers and manager Mike Scioscia told Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times:
This is probably the worst C.J. has struggled since he’s been a starting pitcher, so naturally, you’re concerned. There’s certainly been some head-scratching over his last seven or eight starts. But seeing how hard he works, seeing that it doesn’t look like it’s anything physical, we’re very confident he’s going to get back on that beam and do what we need him to do.
Wilson had a 3.34 ERA on June 19. Since then he’s allowed 32 runs in 24 innings with a 21/14 K/BB ratio and .394 opponents’ batting average.
He originally went on the disabled list with an ankle injury, but then said he discovered while rehabbing that he’d been pitching through a hip issue that had hurt his performance. If the Angels had any appealing fallback options Wilson might already be booted from the rotation, but his job appears to be safe unless general manager Jerry Dipoto can swing a waiver wire trade.
Wilson is under contract for $18 million next season and $20 million in 2016 as part of a five-year, $77.5 million deal.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.