The Pittsburgh Pirates announced on Wednesday morning that right-handed pitcher Chris Archer underwent surgery yesterday to relieve symptoms of neurogenic thoracic outlet syndrome. In the announcement, the Pirates said that he should be fully recovered before the start of the 2021 season. That also means that he won’t be available if there is a 2020 season.
The Pirates hold an $11 M team option for the 2021 season, which also includes a $250,000 buyout. The buyout seems much more likely at this point, so it’s possible that Archer has pitched his last game for the Pirates. He had a 5.19 ERA and a 5.02 FIP in 119.2 innings last year over 23 starts. Archer had a 1.41 WHIP and 143 strikeouts. He had a 4.30 ERA and a 4.00 FIP in 52.1 innings over ten starts with the Pirates in 2018. He missed the end of last season after leaving his August 20th start with right shoulder inflammation. Archer also had hernia surgery over the 2018-19 off-season.
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.
When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.