A few days back, I determined the replacement levels for hitters who will miss some time this upcoming season. Today, the pitchers take center stage.
It’s tough to give any pitcher a full season of innings with almost half of them heading to the IL. Today’s focus is to find those pitchers who won’t see a full workload for one reason or another. Workload limits. Injuries. Time in minors. Since the missed time is known, an owner can the fill in the rest of the season with a replacement pitcher. It’s time to dive in.
Injured or coming off Tommy Surgery
Note: The standard minimum return time from Tommy John surgery is now 14 months. No one in years has come back in 12. I’m skipping any pitcher who had a mid-season or later surgery since they may just be back for a few September starts. I’m not going to worry about September starts in Spring Training.
Out until: ~May 1st
While it may be a mistake, I’m fading Morrow hard. He’s an injury-prone pitcher who is starting the season hurt. And for a closer, he’s good (~2.00 ERA the past three seasons) but not great (9.1 K/9 in 2018). I could see Pedro Stroop take the job and run with it over the first month. When Morrow returns, he may never get another Save. He’s a late round DL stash for now.