The baseball world came to a halt on the fateful afternoon of July 1st, 2019, when it was announced that Angels starting pitcher, Tyler Skaggs, at the age of 27, was found dead in a Texas hotel prior to an away game against the Texas Rangers. Monday’s series opener between the Angels and the Rangers was postponed and will be rescheduled to be played at a later date as a result of the tragedy.
The Angels released a statement after Skaggs’ death was confirmed.
“It is with great sorrow that we report Tyler Skaggs passed away earlier today in Texas.”
“Tyler has, and will always be, an important part of the Angels family. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Carli and his entire family during this devastating time.”
Major League Baseball’s Commissioner Rob Manfred also released a statement:
“I am deeply saddened by today’s tragedy in Texas. 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.”
Skaggs was born in Woodland Hills and attended high school in Santa Monica. His mother, Debbie, was the longtime softball coach at Santa Monica High School and famously provided post-game tips on Skaggs’ pitching mechanics well into his big league career. Skaggs proposed to his wife, Carli, in Bora Bora, on November 9, 2017, and they married in December 2018.
Skaggs was picked 40th overall by the Angels in the first round of the 2009 MLB Draft. He was later traded to the Diamondbacks (as a player to be named later) in a deal for Dan Haren. He was traded back to the Angels in December of 2013 as a part of a three-team trade that included Mark Trumbo, Adam Eaton, and Hector Santiago.
Over the course of seven injury-shortened seasons in the major leagues, Skaggs posted a 4.41 ERA in 520 2/3 innings across 96 career starts.
The Angels did not disclose exactly how Skaggs died. The Southlake Police Department issued a statement that said officers found Skaggs unresponsive in a Hilton hotel room prior to him being pronounced dead at the scene.
“At this time, no foul play is suspected,” police said. “This investigation is ongoing and we will release pertinent information as it is available.”
The Texas Rangers, the Angels would be opponent, issued a statement:
“The Texas Rangers organization wants to express its deepest sympathies to the family of Tyler Skaggs and to the entire Angels organization on this shocking loss. The thoughts and prayers of every member of the Texas Rangers and all their fans are with the Angels organization at this difficult time.”
“There were a lot of pretty emotional guys in there, you could tell. Some guys knew him. [Jesse Chavez] had actually played with him in L.A.,” Rangers’ Manager Chris Woodward said. “Some guys that didn’t even know him were visibly shaken. You could tell.”
“He was a joy to be around,” Ian Kinsler, former Angels teammate, said. “As a teammate, he fit right in with everyone else. He was one of the boys.”
“He was fiery. He could cut guys up pretty easily. He could also take it. He was engaged in conversations. He was thoughtful.”
Teammate Mike Trout tweeted this following his teammate’s passing:
“Words cannot express the deep sadness we feel right now. Our thoughts and prayers are with Carli and their families. Remembering him as a great teammate, friend, and person who will forever remain in our hearts… we love you, 45.”
The writers of Doubleday Double Talk send our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Tyler Skaggs as well as the Angels organization and all of Major League Baseball. The loss of Skaggs will forever leave a hole in the hearts of everyone who was touched by a man who’s life was taken far too soon. Rest in Peace Tyler Wayne Skaggs and may God rest your soul.