OAKLAND -- A’s reliever Ryan Cook continues to inch closer to rejoining the team.
The setup man threw 16 pitches in a minor league game Friday in Phoenix and said the brief outing was his best yet as he works his way back from shoulder inflammation.
“I was very, very happy. I felt like yesterday was a big step,” Cook said Saturday morning. “I was able to drive the baseball when I wanted to.”
Cook and pitching coach Curt Young both said a tentative plan would have Cook throwing a simulated game with Triple-A Sacramento on Monday. He would then pitch in games for Single-A Stockton, at Visalia, on Thursday and Saturday, April 5.
Cook and outfielder Craig Gentry (lower back strain) are eligible to come off the 15-day DL on April 5. But if Cook’s tentative schedule holds, he obviously wouldn’t rejoin the A’s on his first day of eligibility, but soon after.
Gentry also continues to progress well from his injury, A’s manager Bob Melvin said.