The 2022 campaign was a lost one for Ryan Cusick.
He had impressed in his brief stint with the Augusta GreenJackets after being selected with the 24th pick in the 2021 MLB Draft. Cusick allowed just seven runs, five earned, on 15 hits and four walks over his 16.1 innings while striking out 34 batters. It was no wonder that the Oakland A’s targeted him as part of the return for Matt Olson.
Injuries derailing Ryan Cusick in 2022
The A’s were unable to see that same pitcher during his first season in the organization. He had been aggressively assigned to Double-A for the 2022 campaign, entirely skipping the High-A level. A strained oblique sidelined him for nearly three months and likely hindered his performance throughout the season.
Cusick had a disappointing showing at Double-A when he was able to take the mound. He posted a 7.02 ERA and a 2.024 WHiP in his 41 innings, striking out 43 batters with 30 walks. That command he showed in 2021 simply was not there.
The same can be said about Cusick in the Arizona Fall League. He has allowed four runs, one earned, on five hits and five walks over his nine innings, striking out five. While the focus is on getting innings and building Cusick up a bit before the offseason, the A’s were also hoping to see more progress in that time, especially with his command.
This offseason, and 2023, will be important for Cusick. He can take the time he needs to be fully healthy once again, working on his delivery and ensuring that he is mechanically where he needs to be to start next season. That is something that can be worked on in the AFL as well, but that time off could be exactly what he needs.
Ryan Cusick did not look like the pitcher the Oakland A’s had hoped for last year. With an offseason to get healthy, he could become a top pitching prospect.