OAKLAND – Brett Anderson’s return date to the A’s rotation remains up in the air.
The lefty, working his way back from a sprained right ankle, reportedly was set to come off the disabled list and start Friday against Kansas City. But A’s manager Bob Melvin would not specify Monday when Anderson will return.
Anderson made a rehabilitation start Sunday for Double-A Midland and got roughed up for six runs on six hits and four walks in just 3 2/3 innings. But he came out of that game fine physically, according to Melvin.
“The most important thing about his outing was the fact that he didn’t feel anything with the ankle,” Melvin said. “That’s pretty much what we were looking for. We’ll see how it feels today afterward, and probably have a decision (Tuesday) on potentially where we slot him in.”
Melvin’s pregame media session was chock full of medical updates.
Center fielder Coco Crisp, sidelined with a strained left hamstring, looked good running the bases several hours before Monday’s game against Texas, and he was scheduled to take batting practice and shag balls in the outfield. If he continues to progress, the plan remains to activate him from the D.L. Wednesday, the first day he is eligible.
Chris Young (strained left quadriceps) also was set to return Wednesday, but he felt some discomfort in his quad while playing in an extended spring training game Monday. Young homered in the game and played seven innings in center field. He’ll play again Tuesday and be re-evaluated.
With the A’s off Thursday, Melvin said the team could hold Young out until Friday to give him a bit more rest.
The A’s abundance of outfield depth entering the season seemed to ensure they could withstand injury problems, but they couldn’t have predicted this many guys occupying the trainer’s room. In addition to Crisp and Young, right fielder Josh Reddick remains sidelined by a sprained right wrist.
“Those are three key guys for us, but we don’t want to make excuses for anything,” Melvin said. “We have depth in this organization, and we’ve got guys that we like in player development as well, and this is their opportunity to shine.
“I think we probably miss Coco at the top of the order as much as anything. He’s our igniter. But again, you don’t make any excuses. There are other teams with injuries too. You play through them and try to do the best you can.”
--The Rangers are visiting the Coliseum for the first time since being swept at the end of last season and seeing the A’s snatch the American League West title from them. But Texas manager Ron Washington said those memories aren’t driving the Rangers, who enter Monday’s game with a Major League-best 24-13 record.
“I'm not coming up in here thinking about what happened in the past,” Washington said. “You learn from that, but that certainly isn't fueling us. What's fueling us is we're healthy and we're playing good baseball. That’s it.”
Washington, who served on the A’s coaching staff from 1996-06, said the Coliseum crowd during that October series was louder than at any point in the six years since he’s left the organization.
“They were in love with their Oakland A’s, and it was nice to see, no doubt about it,” Washington said. “I think we know that they can get very animated here when they have a reason to, and last year they had a reason to. They love a winner here, no doubt about it.”
--Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson joined the A’s on Monday for one of his occasional in-season cameos with the team. Henderson spends most of the season as a roving minor league instructor, but occasionally dishes some base running, hitting and defensive wisdom to the big club.