Bad news for the Houston Astros.
Pitcher Joe Smith, a key cog in the Astros' bullpen, has ruptured his Achilles tendon, according to the team. He will be out 6-8 months.
Houston #Astos reliever Joe Smith ruptures Achilles’ tendon. He’ll be out 6-8 months— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) December 20, 2018
Smith has had a successful surgery on his Achilles, per a team release, and can now begin the healing process. Smith went 5-1 with a 3.74 ERA in 56 relief appearances for the Astros last season.
Jeff Luhnow announced RHP Joe Smith underwent surgery to repair a ruptured left Achilles tendon and will be out 6-8 months: pic.twitter.com/FFjFJ7X05r— Houston Astros (@astros) December 20, 2018
The 34-year old Cincinnati native has played for six different franchises since he came into the league with the New York Mets in 2007: the Mets, Indians, Angels, Cubs, Blue Jays, and Astros. He won a World Series with the Cubs in 2016, but did not make any postseason appearances.
December 10, 2008: In a 12-player, three-team trade, the @Mets trade Aaron Heilman, Endy Chavez and Jason Vargas to the @Mariners for J.J. Putz, Jeremy Reed and Sean Green. The @Indians send Franklin Gutierrez to Seattle and acquire Joe Smith and Luis Valbuena. pic.twitter.com/JHbhaI1gxL— Mets Rewind (@metsrewind) December 10, 2018
Arguably Smith's best season came with the Angels in 2014, when he made 76 relief appearances and registered a 1.81 ERA. He's largely been a dependable reliever for his entire 12 seasons.
The Astros will certainly miss having Smith in their pen next season, but hopefully he'll be healthy and ready to go by playoff time.