A’s right-hander A.J. Griffin’s recovery from Tommy John elbow surgery has been shut down after he experienced shoulder soreness during a simulated game Thursday.
Joe Stiglich of CSNBayArea.com reports that the A’s are hopeful it proves to be a minor setback because Griffin hadn’t previously dealt with any shoulder problems.
He was close to being cleared for a minor-league rehab assignment about a year removed from surgery, but now Griffin’s recovery timetable is on hold.
Prior to the elbow injury Griffin started 47 games for the A’s in 2012 and 2013, posting a 3.60 ERA and 235/73 K/BB ratio in 282 innings. He missed all of 2014.
Two days after firing pitching coach Juan Nieves the Red Sox have decided on a replacement, hiring 54-year-old Carl Willis away from the Indians organization.
Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe reports that Willis will join the team today, leaving his position as Triple-A pitching coach for the Indians after the Red Sox received permission to interview him.
Willis has been a big-league pitching coach for the Indians and the Mariners, and has experience working with Red Sox manager John Farrell from their time together in Cleveland’s farm system. CC Sabathia, Cliff Lee, and Felix Hernandez all won Cy Young awards with Willis as their pitching coach, for whatever that’s worth.
Willis replaces Nieves, who won the World Series in his first season on the job in 2013 and was fired in his third season on the job thanks to Red Sox pitchers having the worst ERA in the league. Willis’ biggest challenge will be turning around a rotation that lacks No. 1/No. 2 starters and currently features ugly ERAs across the board from Rick Porcello (4.38), Justin Masterson (5.18), Joe Kelly (5.72), Clay Buchholz (6.03), and Wade Miley (6.91).
Kevin Gausman, a high-upside young starter the Orioles have been using out of the bullpen this season, has been placed on the disabled list with right shoulder tendinitis.
For now the team is saying it’s a minor injury and Gausman could have potentially pitched through the discomfort, but they want to be careful with the 24-year-old former No. 4 overall pick.
Gausman appeared in eight games as a reliever, throwing 12 innings with a 4.50 ERA and 13/5 K/BB ratio. And when given a chance to start for the Orioles last season he posted a 3.57 ERA in 113 innings.