Thursday night, Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Scott Oberg underwent surgery at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale to remove blood clots from his right elbow. This is his fourth surgery to address this issue.
Thomas Harding, who broke the story, reports this likely signals the end of Oberg’s career.
The Rockies were deliberate in Oberg’s return to baseball, using him sparingly with appearances in only four games. His most recent was on Monday when he quickly retired the three batters he faced. All indications suggested that Oberg was headed for a rebound in 2021 after missing the 2020 season.
Here he is in a March 12 spring training game against the Giants:
Last fall, Oberg’s top rib on his right side was removed by surgeons at the University of Pennsylvania in hope of correcting his Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. (In a conversation with Drew Goodman this week, Oberg explained the process as well as the support he received from Daniel Bard and Chris Archer, who have also had this surgery.)
In 2019, Oberg was the Rockies’ best pitcher with an ERA of 2.25 and was poised to assume the closer role before the blood clots returned. Rockies fans were anticipating a battle between Oberg and Bard for the closer job.
For the Rockies, Oberg’s presumed retirement creates yet another challenge for a bullpen still finding its way. For fans, Oberg will be remembered for this outing against the Cubs in the 2018 Wildcard:
Oberg finishes his career with an ERA of 3.85 and 234 strikeouts in 257 1⁄3 innings pitched.
Purple Row will update this story as more details become available.
At his Saturday morning media availability, Bud Black said Oberg is out of the hospital.