Los Angeles Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs dead at 27
Los Angeles Angels left-handed starting pitcher Tyler Skaggs was found dead in a Texas hotel room Monday. He was 27.
Police in Southlake, Texas said Skaggs was found unresponsive in a room at the local Hilton shortly after 2 p.m. He was pronounced dead at the scene and foul play is not suspected.
The Angels were scheduled to play the first of a four-game series against the Texas Rangers later Monday. That game has been postponed.
The @Angels just released a statement about the passing of Tyler Skaggs. Devastating. He’s a Santa Monica resident, local kid, just got married in the offseason. I have no words. RIP to a wonderful person who worked hard, cared about his craft and had such personality.
— Jill Painter Lopez (@jillpainter) July 1, 2019
“Tyler has, and always will be, an important part of the Angels family,” the club said in a brief statement. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Carli and his entire family during this devastating time.”
“I am deeply saddened by today’s tragedy in Texas,” MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement. “All of us at Major League Baseball extend our deepest condolences to Tyler’s wife Carli, their family, their friends and all of his Angels teammates and colleagues. We will support the Angels organization through this most difficult period, and we will make a variety of resources available to Tyler’s teammates and other members of the baseball family.”
I just had lunch with Tyler a couple weeks ago. We talked pitching, life. He was so excited about the season. Absolutely gutted. I’m sick
— Phil Hughes (@PJHughes45) July 1, 2019
Skaggs died two days after his last start, in which he lasted 4.1 innings and gave up two earned runs on two hits, walked four and struck out five as the Angels lost 4-0 to the Oakland Athletics. In all, Skaggs made 15 starts in 2019, boasting a record of seven wins and seven losses along with a 4.29 earned run average.
Born in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Woodland Hills, Skaggs was a first-round draft pick of the Angels out of Santa Monica High School in 2009. The Angels traded Skaggs to Arizona in 2010, and he started his big-league career with 13 appearances over two seasons for the Diamondbacks. The Angels reacquired him in December 2013, and he had won 25 games over five seasons with the club.
We came up together. We won together. We laughed and celebrated together. Today, we all lose and mourn together. Your memory, your love for life, everything that made you, you, will live forever in the hearts and minds of those who knew you. Rest In Peace brother. We love you. pic.twitter.com/n30eXspS4N
— Trevor Bauer (@BauerOutage) July 1, 2019
Skaggs had been a regular in the Angels’ starting rotation since late 2016 when he returned from Tommy John surgery. He struggled with injuries repeatedly over the past three seasons but persevered to become a valuable starter in Los Angeles’ injury-plagued rotation. Skaggs started a career-high 24 games last season, going 8-10 with a 4.02 ERA. He missed playing time in April this season with a sprained ankle, but came back strong.
Skaggs was part of the same Angels draft class as Mike Trout, and they were roommates in the low minor leagues before Skaggs was traded to Arizona. They played on the same team in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in 2010.
Skaggs’ mother, Debbie, was the longtime softball coach at Santa Monica High School. She famously provided postgame tips on his pitching mechanics, even deep into his big-league career.
Skaggs’ death is not the first time tragedy has befallen the Angels organization. In April 2009, pitcher Nick Adenhart was one of three people killed when a drunk driver ran a red light and struck a car in which Adenhart was a passenger. The crash took place hours after Adenhart started a game for the Angels against the Athletics and pitched six shutout innings.