Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Roy Halladay was removed from his start Monday night after just three batters and 16 pitches, due to an arm issue and he also said he has been dealing with a stomach illness. He will not pitch again this season, and since he is slated to become a free agent his career with the Phillies is likely over.
Halladay only made 13 starts this season due to a shoulder issue that required surgery, going 4-5 with a 6.82 ERA over 62 innings. His 2012 campaign was also hampered by shoulder and back issues, as he went 11-8 with a 4.49 ERA over 25 starts (156.1 innings) and failed to make more than 30 starts and top 200 innings pitched for the first time since 2005.
Halladay is now 36 years old, and with diminished velocity and declining health he is clearly not the pitcher he was as recently as 2011, when he went 19-6 with a 2.35 ERA over 233.2 innings (32 starts). Could the two-time Cy Young Award winner’s career be over?
The market for Halladay’s services this winter may be limited to teams that expect to be a playoff contender in 2014, and I assume he would only want to pitch for a contending team as his career winds down. In any case, Halladay would surely have to settle for a one-year deal as he attempts to re-establish himself and prove he can stay healthy.
I think it’s possible Halladay will not want to pitch at all if he can’t get back to being the pitcher he once was, regardless of which teams have interest in signing him during the offseason, and at his age with over 2,700 career innings that is likely to be a significant uphill climb.
If we have indeed seen Halladay throw his final pitch, he will finish with 203 career wins and a 3.38 ERA with 67 complete games and 20 shutouts over 16 seasons. The debate over his Hall of Fame candidacy will start in earnest if he does decide to call it a career before next season starts, but the fact he has been a workhorse in an era of increased pitching specialization should make him stand out.
Brad Berreman is a contributing writer at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @bradberreman24.