Programming note: A's-Rays coverage begins tonight at 4 p.m. on Comcast Sportsnet California
SACRAMENTO -- On August 11, Brandon Inge separated his shoulder, popped it back in place, hit the go-ahead RBI single, and remained in the game at third base. That being said, it isn't surprising he expects to be ready to come off the disabled list on Monday when eligible.Inge went 1 for 3 with an RBI double and a walk in his first rehab game. He served as the River Cats designated hitter. "The goal is I come off Monday," Inge said after Thursday's game. "I'm available on Monday."Inge says swinging the bat doesn't bother him. The biggest hurdle is making the throw from third base. He has been playing catch regularly and will be manning the hot corner on Friday in Sacramento. "I didn't foresee any problems from the offensive standpoint," Inge said. "When you come on a rehab start you are just looking for no pain or how you will be able to cope with the pain."RELATED: Brandon Inge career stats 2012 game logs
When asked how his shoulder felt after his first rehab start, Inge said that it felt great. He even took the time after the interview to demonstrate his throwing mechanics. The issue is mainly throwing off-balance. He says that he is likely to feel a little pain when throwing, but he says it is nothing too serious that he can't work through. The A's will have the ultimate say on when they feel Inge is ready to return. They'll want their medical staff to give the go-ahead in order to protect the tough third baseman. They will have a tough decision to make since Josh Donaldson has done an admirable job in Inge's stead. Donaldson is batting .405 with a .450 on-base percentage and .622 slugging percentage since being recalled on August 14. Inge's production at the plate and veteran leadership is important to the A's. He has 11 homers since joining the A's and his 50 RBIs rank third on the team.