BREAKING: Garrett Richards Needs Tommy John

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The Angels organization and fans received terrible news this morning. Their Opening Day starter, Garrett Richards, has UCL damage and will have to go through Tommy John surgery. To make matters worse, the Angels also received news that another starter, Andrew Heaney, has UCL damage but Heaney will attempt to avoid Tommy John surgery through rehab. 

This is brutal for the Angels’ postseason hopes as their starting rotation is shattered. At the end of last season, the Angels figured to have plenty of rotation depth in Garrett Richards, Andrew Heaney, C.J. Wilson, Jered Weaver, Tyler Skaggs, Hector Santiago, Matt Shoemaker, top prospect Sean Newcomb, and Nick Tropeano.

The Angels have lost their rotation depth in a hurry. They parted with Newcomb to trade for shortstop Andrelton Simmons. Richards will be out for the rest of the season, at a minimum, and Heaney may well join him in that prognosis. Wilson is still recovering from elbow surgery and has yet to pitch in the majors this year. Skaggs is also still recovering from his own Tommy John surgery. The only remaining healthy starters from that large group are Hector Santiago, Jered Weaver, Matt Shoemaker, and Nick Tropeano.

Santiago is 2-1 with a 3.58 ERA through 6 starts. Weaver is 3-1 with a 5.40 ERA through 5 starts. Shoemaker is 1-4 with a 9.15 ERA through 5 starts. Tropeano is 1-1 with a 3.42 ERA through 5 starts. The Angels are simply not getting the pitching they need to win enough ball games to stay competitive in the AL West. They will need another starter for the time being, at least until Wilson or Skaggs returns.

What do you think? Are the Angels’ chances of reaching the postseason close to zero after this devastating news?


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