Double-A closer Craig Italiano has been placed on the minor league disabled list with an unspecified injury. Italiano has not pitched since a July 15 outing in which he allowed two runs. He had allowed a run in all but one of his five July appearances after allowing just seven runs (three earned) in his first three months combined.
Clearly, something was up, and now he’ll get some time to rest. Italiano’s always been known as a questionable-mechanics guy back from when he was drafted by the A’s, so an arm issue wouldn’t be the biggest of surprises.
Italiano was having a decent year, although his 30/23 K/BB in 42 2/3 innings was very poor for a reliever. He has a 1.69 ERA and 17 saves. The 24-year-old righty will be replaced in the closer’s role by Brandon Gomes, who has been far more dominant, with a 63/16 K/BB in 51 1/3 innings. The 26-year-old Gomes has a 1.92 ERA on the year. He picked up his first save of the season with a 1-2-3 inning last night with two strikeouts.