Oberg lands on IL after blood clot procedure

Davis stumbles in first appearance back in closer's role

August 19th, 2019

DENVER -- Rockies closer underwent a procedure Saturday to dissolve a blood clot in his right arm. His season is likely over, although manager Bud Black and the club did not make that official.

Sunday’s 7-6 victory over the Marlins had late-game intrigue in Oberg’s absence. blew a save by yielding three runs in the top of the ninth, and snatched it back with two scoreless frames that could earn him some closing opportunities.

Whatever happens, however, pales in comparison to the health of Oberg (6-1, 2.25 ERA, five saves), who was derailed from a career year.

“In simplest terms, blood clot in the arm, had it dissolved, and what happens today and moving forward, I’ll be kept abreast of that -- that’s all I know,” Black said.

“His arm felt heavy; it just didn’t feel normal, so it was alarming,” Black said, describing what led to the decision to have Oberg checked.

Oberg, 29, had a similar flare-up in 2016, also in August, when he was diagnosed with blood clots in his arm and shoulder. He was prescribed blood-thinning medication, and later the sutures in his right shoulder became infected.

“I would think it’s concerning,” Black said, but adding that he is not qualified to assess beyond that.

Black said he has texted with Oberg, who said the procedure went fine. Teammates sent well-wishes.

“We love Oberg,” said star third baseman Nolan Arenado, who homered twice Sunday. “He’s been having an unbelievable year. Just to see him transform into such a good baseball player and good pitcher, it’s so cool to see.

“You never want to see anyone in pain, or something scary like that. It’s happened before, which is scary, too. But he’s in good spirits. I saw him today, so it was really cool to see him. We love that guy.”

Oberg took over for the struggling Davis earlier this month. His latest outing was a one-hit, one-strikeout ninth inning of a 3-0 victory over the Marlins on Friday night.

Davis (1-5, 6.81, 15 saves in 18 chances) had pitched four scoreless outings after being taken out of the closer role. But Sunday, he walked Jorge Alfaro -- who extended his ninth-inning leadoff at-bat to nine pitches after an 0-2 start -- and yielded Lewis Brinson’s double and Neil Walker’s RBI single before departing. The runners Estevez inherited scored, but he escaped with no further damage.

With two out and one on in the 10th, and with Black ready to make a change, Estevez fanned Brinson on three pitches.

Estevez said he is ready for any role because he has pitched “in every spot,” but he added he is thinking about Oberg.

“How well he was doing and the type of person he is, how does stuff like that happen to a guy like that?” Estevez said. “But we never know. The good thing is he’s good now. Let’s pray, and hopefully he gets better quick.”

With Oberg officially on the 10-day injured list with axillary artery thrombosis, the Rockies recalled righty DJ Johnson from Triple-A Albuquerque. Johnson is 0-1 with a 9.26 ERA in 14 Major League games this season.