Junior LHP Tyler Stubblefield has been dismissed from the Texas A&M baseball team for a violation of team rules. Obviously, this news comes at a pretty bad time for the Aggies, with the season less than a month away, and this once again means that Rob Childress will be without his likely Friday night starter. Stubblefield missed most of last season due to a torn ACL suffered less than a week before the start of the 2015 season.
Stubblefield has appeared in 21 career games, posting a 4-2 record with a 4.06 ERA in 71 innings pitched. Stubblefield’s main claim to fame was in his complete game, 3-2 victory over the Texas Longhorns to force a winner-take-all game for the Houston Regional championship. Stubblefield made his first appearance for the Aggies on May 16th against the Ole Miss Rebels, giving the Aggies two-thirds scoreless innings in relief. He made two starts in the postseason: against California in the College Station Regional, and then against TCU in game 3 of the Fort Worth Super Regional. In his start against Cal, he received a no decision, giving up one run on four hits while striking out four and walking just one in five innings of work. Against TCU, he again received a no decision, allowing three runs on two hits, three walks and five strikeouts in five innings.
So what does this mean going forward?
Without Stubblefield, Coach Childress will again have to rely on the rest of his staff to step up into new roles, a la Matt Kent last season. The difference between then and now, however, is that there are fewer guys with starting experience at the college level. I would look for Childress to give junior righty Ryan Hendrix a shot, given that he made five starts last year, including a one-run victory at Tennessee.