Sometimes this stuff is just too easy. Still, we greatly appreciate Sean Doolittle cutting to the chase at Athletics’ camp in Mesa, Arizona. It’s a real help.
By the way, Doolittle also changed his Twitter name to “BestShapeOfMyLifeGuy,” so he’s living the gimmick these days.
Doolittle missed the start of last season due to a slight tear in his rotator cuff. The southpaw finally made his season debut in late May, but landed right back on the disabled list after just one appearance. After three months of rehab, Doolittle rejoined the Athletics in late August and posted a 4.26 ERA and 13/5 K/BB ratio over 12 2/3 innings. He looked much better after his first couple of appearances and his velocity wasn’t far off from where it has been in the past. The Athletics added Ryan Madson over the winter, but Doolittle should be the favorite for save chances this season if he’s healthy. And fortunately for the A’s, it sounds like he is.
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.