Matt Hobgood has been a disappointment since the Orioles selected him with the fifth overall pick in the 2009 draft, throwing 158 innings with a 5.48 ERA in the low minors, and now Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports that the 21-year-old right-hander will miss the entire season following shoulder surgery.
According to Connolly he’ll go under the knife on April 2 to “size down his right rotator cuff.” Tommy John elbow surgery gets all the attention, but rotator cuff surgeries are often even tougher for pitchers to come back from.
Hobgood received a $2.4 million signing bonus and wasted no time debuting in full-season ball, but he’s been dealing with shoulder problems since late 2010, spending last season on and off the disabled list while unsuccessfully trying rest and rehab.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Angels and reliever Cody Allen are in agreement on a one-year contract, pending a physical. The value of the contract is not yet known.
Allen, 30, was looking for an opportunity to close and the Angels can certainly provide that. He will likely be the favorite to break camp as the closer. 2018 was the roughest year of his career, however, as he finished with a 4.70 ERA, 27 saves, and a 80/33 K/BB ratio in 67 innings. Among Allen’s six full seasons, his 27.7 strikeout rate and 11.4 percent walk rate represented career-worsts. FanGraphs also shows him losing nearly a full MPH on his average fastball velocity.
The Angels lost closer Keynan Middleton to Tommy John surgery early last season and he likely won’t return until the second half of the 2019 season. Blake Parker, who handled save situations in Middleton’s place, was non-tendered by the Angels in November and ended up signing with the Twins. The closer’s role is Allen’s to lose, it seems.