After Samardzija posted a very strong strikeout-to-walk ratio of almost nine last year, the Giants were optimistic he would have a good 2018 season as the No. 3 starter.
But then the first wave of the bad-news-comes-in-threes came to the Giants’ pitching staff.
As Samardzija was ready to follow up his strong 2017 season–albeit his 4.42 ERA was a bit high–the Giants announced last week he would open the season on the disabled list with a pectoral strain. He won’t be back until at least mid-April.
But the good news is, he’s expected to play catch Wednesday and is optimistic he could come back soon.
Samardzija told NBC Sports Bay Area:
"“I want to pitch. I don’t enjoy watching. It doesn’t sit right with me.”"
This is the 32-year-old’s first stint on the disabled list in his career. Coupled with the injury, Samardzija was having a terrible spring, plagued by the same problems he’s suffered throughout his career.
In four spring training starts (11 innings), he had a 10.64 ERA and a 2.18 WHIP. More concerning are the six home runs he gave up and the .347 average against him.
He also gave up 17 hits. Home runs allowed was a big issue last year for Samardzija. He gave up a career-high 30 and continued that trend this spring.
So although he had the high strikeout-to-walk-ratio, when Samardzija did get hit–he got hit hard.
Samardzija had been working on his curveball and changeup during camp, so we’ll see how he does when he comes back in mid-to-late April.