Zach Britton’s rookie campaign has taken another unfortunate turn.
According to Roch Kubato of MASNSports.com, the Orioles have placed Britton on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left shoulder. He was cleared to make room for Cesar Izturis, who is back from elbow surgery.
It’s always scary when you hear something about a pitcher’s shoulder, but hopefully this is more about fatigue and/or losing his mechanics than Britton being seriously hurt. The young left-hander has allowed 15 runs (10 earned) on 19 hits over two starts since returning from the minor leagues last Saturday.
Britton, 23, has a 4.66 ERA and 68/40 K/BB ratio over 20 starts this season. After posting an impressive 2.89 ERA through his first 10 major league starts, he has an ERA of 8.00 over his last 10 outings. Ouch.
Mets assistant general manager John Ricco told Newsday today that he expects minor league outfielder Tim Tebow to return for a third season in professional baseball.
Tebow, 31, broke the hamate bone in his right hand while swinging a bat in late July, ending his season. It was a fairly successful season for him all things considered. After being promoted to Double-A Binghamton to start the year he hit .273/.336/.399 with six home runs, a stolen base and a .734 OPS in 298 plate appearances and made the Double-A All-Star team. That’s not the stuff of a top prospect — he strikes out far too much and the power numbers aren’t fantastic given that power would figure to be his strongest tool — but it’s pretty respectable for a guy his age and with his relative lack of baseball experience. As I said back in July, you can believe the Mets’ interest in Tebow is more marketing than baseball, but that does not preclude you from giving the guy a deserved tip of the cap for working hard and sticking it out in the bush leagues.
Assuming he does come back, the Mets are likely to start him at Triple-A Syracuse in the hopes that he’d eventually get to the bigs as a late season callup if the Mets aren’t in contention. Indeed, many believed that was the plan for him this year had he not been injured.