Bud Norris
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Bud Norris ends 2018 season with hamstring injury

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It’s been a rough month for Cardinals reliever Bud Norris, who likely saw his 2018 season come to an abrupt end after departing Friday’s 8-4 loss to the Cubs with a left hamstring injury. While the right-hander doesn’t appear to be facing a serious setback, club manager Mike Shildt told reporters that he’ll likely hold Norris back from any relief appearances over the last two games of the regular season.

Norris, 33, entered Friday’s game in the bottom of the seventh inning and almost immediately slipped on the mound during Kyle Hendricks‘ at-bat. Hendricks took a five-pitch walk to open the inning, then advanced to third base on David Bote‘s single and a throwing error by Jedd Gyorko. With runners on the corners and no outs, Norris still appeared to be in some pain and made his exit from the mound following a brief conference with Shildt and a team trainer. He was later diagnosed with left hamstring tightness.

Although the veteran righty hasn’t paid an official visit to the disabled list this season, he’s weathered a variety of minor injuries over the last several months, from a bout of right hip discomfort to a blister issue on his pitching hand. He’ll prepare to enter free agency this fall after rounding out his 10th year in the majors with a career-high 28 saves, 3.59 ERA, 3.3 BB/9, and 10.5 SO/9 through 57 2/3 innings.

Angels place Andrew Heaney on 10-day injured list

Andrew Heaney
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The Angels have placed Andrew Heaney on the 10-day injured list with left shoulder inflammation, the club announced Saturday. The move is retroactive to July 17, though it’s not yet certain that he’ll be cleared to pitch again by the end of the month.

It’s an unfortunate development for the 28-year-old southpaw, who has battled inflammation in his pitching elbow on and off since spring training. In fact, his arm issues date back several years, including the shoulder impingement that put him on the shelf in 2017 and the Tommy John surgery he underwent in 2016. With such a complicated medical history, it makes sense that the Angels would want to proceed with caution as they facilitate the lefty’s eventual return to the mound.

Given his ongoing struggles, Heaney has seen mixed results with the club in 2019. Prior to his recent IL assignment, he pitched to a 1-3 record in nine starts with a 5.09 ERA, 3.7 BB/9, and 10.6 SO/9 through 46 innings. Since the end of June, however, his starts have gotten shorter and shorter; he lasted just 4 1/3 innings in his final outing against the Astros, expending a tremendous 103 pitches and issuing two runs, two walks, and five strikeouts during the team’s eventual 7-2 win.

In a corresponding roster move, the Angels claimed lefty reliever Adalberto Mejía off of waivers from the Twins. Mejía, 26, is expected to be activated ahead of Saturday’s game versus the Mariners. Over 13 appearances with Minnesota, he turned in an 8.80 ERA, 7.0 BB/9, and 8.8 SO/9 in 15 1/3 innings.