Jharel Cotton

Jharel Cotton suffers injury during pregame warmups, scratched vs Tigers

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NBCSportsBayArea.com

Jharel Cotton suffers injury during pregame warmups, scratched vs Tigers

A’s rookie Jharel Cotton was a late scratch from Monday’s start in Detroit after suffering a strained right groin.

Cotton began his typical pregame throwing routine at Comerica Park. Then cameras caught him grabbing at his leg. Shortly after, he walked off the field and long reliever Raul Alcantara went out to warm up. Alcantara made the start in the opener of a three-game series against the Tigers.

Though there was no indication from the A’s about the severity of the strain, with less than two weeks left in the regular season, it brings up the possibility of Cotton simply being shut down for the season. More detail likely will be given to reporters by manager Bob Melvin after the game.

Cotton is 8-10 with a 5.81 ERA in 23 starts this season.

With family on his mind, Cotton provides lift with some huge help in A's win

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USATSI

With family on his mind, Cotton provides lift with some huge help in A's win

BOSTON — Utilizing his platform as a major leaguer, Jharel Cotton is doing his part to help with hurricane relief in the Caribbean.

On Wednesday night, his A’s teammates provided him a boost as well.

Cotton navigated through trouble to make it through five innings, benefiting from some early offense, a stout bullpen and one very heady defensive play by Matt Olson to get the victory as the A’s beat the Red Sox 7-3 at Fenway Park.

The win snapped an eight-game road losing streak for the A’s, and it gave Cotton just his second win of the season in a night game. He came in with a 1-7 record and 8.00 ERA in 11 starts under the lights.

“I wasn’t thinking about it too much,” Cotton said. “I just wanted to come in and give my team a chance to win.”

Cotton (8-10) has concerns on his mind beyond his pitching. He took the mound Wednesday with the inscription “VI/BVI Strong” written on his cap, short for “Virgin Islands/British Virgin Islands Strong.” He was born on St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands and spent a big chunk of his childhood on Tortola in the British Virgin Islands, and he’s very much aware of the destructive damage done by Hurricane Irma throughout the Caribbean.

Cotton’s father had the roof blown off his house and his uncle suffered similar damage to his home, though Cotton’s relatives all remained safe. In the immediate aftermath of the hurricane, Cotton started a GoFundMe page to raise money for relief efforts. He’s raised more than $12,000 so far.

“It means a lot to me because that’s where I grew up,” he said. “There’s a lot of people back there that need a lot of help, and for me to be on the stage I’m on right now to do that is pretty awesome.”

Cotton was making his first career start against Boston, and his teammates staked him to a four-run lead in the first before he even took the mound. It was a 6-2 game in the third when the Sox loaded the bases with one out. Mitch Moreland hit a bouncer to Olson at first, and the rookie alertly took the out at first and then fired home to nail Dustin Pedroia trying to score for an inning-ending double play.

That play had A’s manager Bob Melvin marveling at Olson’s defensive acumen for a 23-year-old.

“It was the kind of situation where if they hit it hard at you, you can go to second and turn two,” Olson said. “But it wasn’t hit that great. It took me a little toward the bag. You just improvise a bit (with) momentum heading that way.”

Liam Hendriks, Daniel Coulombe, Ryan Dull, Chris Hatcher and Blake Treinen combined for four scoreless innings to close it out as the A’s won for the sixth time in seven games.

Cotton hardly was overpowering, giving up three runs on six hits over his five innings. But he helped the A’s snap a seven-game losing streak at Fenway, their longest since an eight-gamer that bridged 1996 and 1997.

“He definitely had to battle through some stuff a couple times to where we were on the verge of getting him out, and he ended up getting some double plays from some pretty good hitters,” Melvin said. “You look at the box score, and it doesn’t tell you how he battled.”

A's bust it open in eighth, sweep Rangers at home

A's bust it open in eighth, sweep Rangers at home

BOX SCORE

OAKLAND -- Texas starter A.J. Griffin gave up back-to-back home runs in the second inning and retired only 10 batters, and the Oakland Athletics beat the Rangers 8-3 on Sunday to complete a three-game sweep.

Shin-Soo Choo hit his 16th home run and the Rangers added an unearned run but managed little else against A's starter Jharel Cotton and three relievers.

The loss dropped Texas three games behind Minnesota for the second AL wild card.

Adding to the Rangers' woes was uncertainty over where they'll play next.

Texas is scheduled to begin a three-game series against the Astros in Houston on Tuesday, but those plans were on hold because of severe flooding resulting from Hurricane Harvey. The Rangers will fly to Dallas - as will the Astros - until Major League Baseball figures out what to do.

Griffin (6-5) beat the A's on April 17 but didn't last long against his former club this time. The right-hander allowed three runs on five hits, struck out three and walked three before manager Jeff Banister pulled him after Griffin gave up a one-out double to Bruce Maxwell in the fourth.

The Rangers didn't offer much offensive support.

Choo's home run marked the first time someone other than Adrian Beltre had an RBI against the A's in the series. Elvis Andrus added a run-scoring single in the eighth but Mike Napoli lined into an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded.

Cotton (7-10) matched his career high of nine strikeouts, allowed one unearned run and pitched four-hit ball over six innings to win consecutive starts for the second time this season.

Blake Treinen retired five batters for his seventh save.

Matt Olson, the A's rookie first baseman who spent most of the year in the minors, hit his ninth home run in 35 games off Griffin in the second. Two pitches later, Matt Chapman connected for his 10th.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Rangers: LHP Jake Diekman will pitch for Triple-A Round Rock on Monday while continuing a comeback from three abdominal operations.

Athletics: INF Jed Lowrie exited with a bruised left shin in the sixth. . RHP Paul Blackburn is scheduled for an MRI on his right hand. Blackburn was hit by a line drive off the bat of Baltimore's Trey Mancini on Tuesday.

UP NEXT

Rangers: LHP Martin Perez (9-10, 5.00 ERA) is scheduled to start the series opener against the Astros following an off day Monday. Perez has won four straight after dropping three consecutive games.

Athletics: RHP Daniel Gossett (3-6, 5.49) continues his up-and-down season Monday at the Los Angeles Angels.