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Alex Cobb to resume baseball activities “in about 6 months” following hip surgery

Cincinnati Reds v San Francisco Giants Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Janie McCauley broke the news just now that the San Francisco Giants will be without their second-most valuable starting pitcher for probably a third of the 2024 season.

Just some quick math here: 6 months encompasses all of November, December, January, February, March, and April, assuming no setbacks. We also don’t have a clear idea on what “back to pitching” means. Beginning a rehab assignment? Resuming baseball activities? For my purposes, it feels most correct to say that he won’t be on the Opening Day roster and he’s almost certain to miss the first month of the season.

That’s a big blow for a team in need of as many roster stalwarts as they can hang onto. Cobb’s 2024 team option is for $10 million and so he was always set to be a bargain for the projected performance. Cobb’s career, though, has been built around a series of injuries and even in his post-COVID reinvention, that has remained a factor.

Steven’s review of his solid 2023 season where he was at one point the ace of the staff goes into some depth looking at his odd day/night splits, but he was an All-Star and nearly pitched a no-hitter even after his hip problems caught up to him later in the season. I’d call his season a success and his performance one befitting a warrior.

So, what’s the team to do without Logan Webb’s mentor available for at least the first month of the season and probably beyond that? This certainly underscores the team’s need to secure a talent from the top of the free agent market. It’s a situation that adds another layer of urgency to the likely pursuit of Yoshinobu Yamamoto and Blake Snell, but at the same time, this is exactly why the Giants have focused on creating depth.

Even if they strike out at the top of the market (as they usually do, remember), they can turn to Webb and the continued development of Kyle Harrison is a potential 1-2 punch: two prestige series backed up by 30 Rock and Big Bang Theory reruns (Anthony DeSclafani, Ross Stripling, Keaton Winn, and Tristan Beck). Or Sonny Gray plus Marcus Stroman (in case they really strike out at the top of the market in all pursuits). In other words, it doesn’t create a new urgency, but it adds another 5mph to the speedometer or something.

Get well soon, Alex Cobb. Thanks for being a swell Giant. Hope to see you on the field next season and, hopefully, it’s part of a genuine playoff push.