The Oakland Athletics have announced that their ace, Sean Manaea is undergoing surgery and will miss the remainder of this season. The A’s fear that Manaea might miss the entire 2019 season as well. He will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his left shoulder in an effort to try and heal his rotator cuff tendonitis. The Athletics should have a better idea of Manaea’s availability for next season after the surgery is complete. A spokesperson for Oakland has this to say about the injury:
” We are disappointed for both Sean and the team with the news of his injury that will sideline him for the rest of 2018 and likely all of 2019″
The Athletics placed the left-handed starter on the 10-day disabled list with the tendonitis on August 26. At the time the team believed that he would return to the rotation in 2018, but his condition has not gotten any better. Manaea began strengthening exercises on September 3, but it became clear that surgery was the best option.
The surgery is scheduled for September 19 and will be performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles. The Athletics will be given an update on the work that was performed after the surgery.
Manaea was having one of the better seasons in the American League at the time that he was placed on the disabled list. He was tied for second for most games started in the American League. He was ninth in total innings pitched and ranked sixth in fewest walks per nine innings with 1.79/
The talented 26-year-old made 27 starts for the Athletics this season and had a 12-9 record through those starts. He posted a 3.59 earned run average and recorded 108 strikeouts in 160 ⅔ innings pitched this season. He threw a no-hitter against the Boston Red Sox in a start in April.
Ace Lost for Season
The loss of Manaea is a huge blow to the playoff chances of the Oakland Athletics. Entering play on Wednesday the Athletics trailed the Houston Astros by just three games in the American League West. Oakland holds a 7.5 game lead over the Seattle Mariners for the second Wild Card spot in the American League. If the Athletics are able to make the playoffs, someone other than Manaea will be needed to start against the New York Yankees.
The Oakland Athletics have been one of the best stories in baseball in 2018, and they’ve also been one of the most resilient teams. The Athletics have had to use fourteen different starting pitchers this season, and Manaea was the last A’s pitcher standing from their opening day starting rotation.
The Athletics have lost starters Jharel Cotton, Kendall Graveman, and Daniel Gossett to Tommy John surgery in the last seven months. They also lost their number two prospect, A.J. Puk to the same injury which comes with a year-plus rehab. Andrew Triggs and Paul Blackburn have also been bit by the injury bug this season and have spent time on the disabled list.
Oakland has been employing a unique strategy of late that uses up much of their bullpen to try and win games. Liam Hendricks was scheduled to be the “opener” in another bullpen game on Wednesday night.