Skaggs sustained the injury with two out in the fourth inning of his start against the Chicago Cubs on Friday. When he released a pitch that Cubs left fielder Kyle Schwarber bunted for a single, Skaggs landed in a divot on the mound at Wrigley Field and knew instantly something was wrong.
His left ankle felt weak, too weak to push off his left foot with full strength. He noticed the effect of it within moments: Two pitches into the next at-bat of an eventual loss, Skaggs’ low-90s fastball velocity dropped 5 mph. He got the third out of the inning, but Skaggs didn’t push his luck.
He told trainers what ailed him and was removed from the game. A day later, he received an MRI that revealed a minor sprain.
Skaggs said Monday at Globe Life Park that he’s already feeling better. He played catch in the outfield during batting practice and appeared to come away from it in good shape.
“It’s upsetting but I know it’s nothing serious,” said Skaggs, who allowed seven earned runs in 15 innings over his three starts this season. “Just kind of want to get on top of it now so it doesn’t linger around for a long time.”
It’s the latest fluke injury for Skaggs, who last year had a promising campaign derailed after he tweaked a muscle in his groin during a workout. He pitched through the strain, made it worse and ended up on the disabled list.
He did not want to allow something similar to occur this season.
“I am kind of accustomed to the freak things now to the point where, it is what it is,” Skaggs said.
Right-hander Jaime Barria was recalled from triple-A Salt Lake City to take Skaggs’ spot on the roster and will start Tuesday at Texas.
The injury move was dated retroactively to April 13. Should Skaggs recover without issue, he would miss only one turn in the rotation. He could slip back in it April 23.
He and the Angels are hopeful he can stick to that timetable.
“Honestly, it took me by surprise,” Skaggs said. “I landed in a weird position with my foot halfway in the hole and halfway out. It kind of didn’t feel good. I pushed through it. I’m happy I did because I would have been kind of salty if I didn’t finish the inning.”