With starting pitcher Bartolo Colon suspended for the first five games of the 2013 MLB season, the last thing the Oakland A’s need is another hiccup in their starting rotation. A’s lefty Brett Anderson is scheduled to be the A’s opening day starter, but his storied history of injuries may be cropping up once again.
Anderson missed most of the 2012 season recovering from Tommy John surgery (Sidebar: I don’t think I’ve written a baseball column yet this season that didn’t contain the words “recovering from Tommy John surgery”), and now seems to be dealing with some discomfort in his neck and back, which has cost him some time on the mound during Spring Training.
Right now the issues aren’t appearing to be anything serious, and the A’s haven’t made any changes as to Anderson being on the mound on opening day. But with his health history, the club has to be getting a little nervous.
The A’s have been looking at Anderson as their next ace for years, but the ailments and injuries that he’s dealt with have stalled that progress. Oakland will need him to be that and more if they want to repeat as division champions and take the next step into the postseason in 2013.
In four MLB seasons, Anderson has compiled a career 3.57 ERA, with a won-loss record of 25-25, and 311 strikeouts in 406 innings pitched. Not exactly shimmering numbers for a guy who was heralded as the next big thing in a long line of pitchers who were that big thing in Oakland.