The Athletics placed starter Sonny Gray on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right trapezius muscle, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports. The A’s recalled Daniel Coulombe from Triple-A Nashville to take Gray’s spot on the roster.
Slusser suggests that Eric Surkamp or Daniel Mengden could take Gray’s spot in the starting rotation. Mengden, 23, was acquired in the Scott Kazmir trade and has put up an aggregate 0.72 ERA over 50 innings in the minor leagues this year, 23 with Double-A Midland and 27 with Nashville.
Gray, who finished third in AL Cy Young Award balloting last year, struggled to a 6.19 ERA and a 41/24 K/BB ratio in 48 innings over nine starts.
Gray is the 13th member of the Athletics concurrently on the disabled list. The club lost Josh Reddick to a broken thumb on Friday.
The Pirates are officially shutting down Chris Archer for the season, GM Neal Huntington revealed Sunday. It’s more of a formality than anything else, but, as the Pirates are currently out of postseason contention, there seems to be no point in forcing the right-hander to accelerate his recovery from right shoulder inflammation.
Archer, 30, sustained the injury in late August and was initially projected to return sometime during September. He’s been throwing from flat ground over the last several weeks, but there had been no indication that he was ready to resume starting duties for the club. He’ll end his 2019 run with a 3-9 record in 23 starts and a 5.19 ERA, 4.1 BB/9, 10.8 SO/9, and 0.7 fWAR across 119 2/3 innings pitched; not his worst performance to date, but a considerable step down from the sub-5.00 ERA and 2.6 fWAR he posted with the Rays and Pirates in 2018.
With two weeks left in the regular season, the Pirates will soon wrap up their fourth consecutive non-contending campaign. Following Saturday’s brutal 14-1 loss to the Cubs, they were mathematically eliminated from postseason qualification. They last reached the playoffs in 2015, though it’s been six years since they advanced past the wild card tiebreaker and 27 years since they advanced past the Division Series.