Looking for a chance to rebound in 2020, Angels pitcher Taylor Cole will instead miss the season after undergoing shoulder surgery.
With the early issues plaguing the Angels bullpen leading to a revolving door of relievers moving back and forth between the active roster and the team’s alternative training site, there has been one name conspicuously missing from the shuttle. Where has Taylor Cole been?
We finally seem to have an answer for that question.
Cole took to Instagram on Thursday to announce the he had recently undergone surgery on his right shoulder hoping to correct an issue he’s been enduring for some time.
"“Yesterday I got shoulder surgery. It has been something that has been been bothering me for quite awhile and after this last hiccup I wasn’t able to overcome it. I have a difficult road ahead of me, but I feel in my heart I have a lot more baseball to play.”"
By Cole’s own admission, the operation will take some time to recover from, which would wipe out any chance of the 30-year-old from pitching in 2020.
To this point, he had been a member of the 60-man player pool and assigned to the team’s alternate training site in Long Beach. However, it is unclear how much work he was able to get in before he was shut down.
Entering the season, we spotlighted Cole as a potential bounce-back candidate, but those plans were apparently derailed by his arm trouble. With his season now done, the Angels will likely place Cole on the 45-day injured list so they can clear up a spot on the 60-man player pool.
It has been somewhat of a mixed bag for Taylor Cole during his tenure with the Angels. After coming in hot in 2018, posting a 2.75 ERA, a 9.8 K/9, and a 4-2 record over 18 appearances (two starts), he stumbled last season. In 380 appearances in 2019, Cole went 3-4 with a 5.92 ERA and a 8.7 K/9 mark. He was hurt by an increase in both walks (4.2 BB/9) and saw his hits allowed more than double (10.1 H/9) last season. As a result, he was outrighted over the winter, and ultimately accepted his assignment to the minors.
Of course, Cole holds a special spot in Angels’ lore. On July 12th, during the team’s first home game following the death of Tyler Skaggs, Cole pitched the first two innings of a combined no-hitter with fellow reliever Felix Pena against the Seattle Mariners.
It’ll be interesting to see if the Angels bring Taylor Cole back for the 2021 season, whether as a rehab possibility or in a minor league capacity. Regardless, we wish him well in his recovery and hope to see him back on the mound again soon!