After starting the season 6-0, A’s right-hander Trevor Cahill has struggled a bit over his last seven starts. Cahill, now 6-5 with a 3.42 ERA, has been struggling recently with his command, and has issued a total of 28 walks over his last seven starts.
In his last start against the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday, the A’s young righty allowed a staggering seven walks, while failing to strike out an opposing hitter. He lasted just 4.2 innings on Tuesday, and it’s become quite apparent that the A’s young ace is in a bit of a funk.
For Oakland, pitching is the team’s biggest strength, but the team’s recent injuries have taken a toll on the starting rotation. The team cannot afford to have Cahill, who signed an extension earlier this season, to continue to struggle for the rest of the season. This month, Cahill’s stats read like this: 0-2, 14.0 IP, 20 hits allowed, 15 earned runs, 11 BB, 9 K, 2.21 WHIP, 9.64 ERA. Those numbers are definitely a far cry from his early season performance in April and May.
Cahill’s command issues have the righty ranking second in the American League with 41 walks. The 23-year old pitched well last season, going 18-8 with a 2.97 ERA, and started this year off on the right foot. Recently, however, Cahill hasn’t looked like the same pitcher. Is he hurt? Could he be hiding an injury because of Oakland’s already overflowing disabled-list?
Hopefully for Oakland, Cahill is just dealing with mechanical problems and not a major problem concerning his health. The A’s will have help on the way shortly, as flamethrower Rich Harden is nearing a return to Oakland’s rotation. The A’s expect Harden to eventually begin a rehab stint in Triple-A Sacramento, and will likely use him as a starter in the rotation. Until that extra help arrives, however, Oakland will need Cahill to iron out his problems, and return to the form that helped him win 18 games last season.