This was painful just hearing about it. A’s lefty Dallas Braden was scheduled to start today against the Mariners but got pushed back until tomorrow because he had an emergency root canal Friday afternoon. Braden chipped one of his right upper molars in his sleep Thursday night, and woke up with extraordinary pain. A visit to the dentist showed a decayed tooth, and Braden needed a root canal. If the root canal doesn’t work, Braden said he’ll have to get part of his jaw bone shaved down and replaced with a cadaver bone. That would take eight months to heal, and then a replacement tooth would be screwed in. You have to sympathize with the guy, but at least the situation provided comedic fodder for Braden, always a hilarious quote. “Luckily the (dentist) had a pretty sweet setup,” he said. “He had these goggles that project a 50-inch TV in front of you. So I was watching ‘Iron Man’ while he was standing over me just jackhammering on my face.”
It shouldn’t have a big effect on Braden’s pitching. He’ll go tomorrow against the White Sox. He took Vicodin for the pain this morning, and it’s probably wise he doesn’t try to take the mound today. Jerome Williams was brought in from minor league camp to take his start today against Seattle in Peoria.
–A’s manager Bob Geren revealed this morning that Orlando Cabrera has some tightness in his lower back and will miss a couple more days. Cabrera was feeling under the weather and has missed the past three games, but now we know there’s more to it. Geren downplayed the injury. “The good thing about him, he came to camp and looked great in the field and at the plate.”
–Gio Gonzalez’s bid to make the starting rotation out of camp are all but gone, as he’s nursing a sore left shoulder. He’s unable to pitch right now and is limited to long toss. Manager Bob Geren said it would be “at least a week” until Gonzalez can pitch in a game, but I’d guess it’s going to be longer than that. It’s been more than a week since he appeared in a game …
–No word yet on how Eric Chavez’s “simulated swings” went today. Hopefully I’ll know more later, as Chavez has said that swinging the bat will be the biggest indicator of how his right shoulder is progressing.
–As I mentioned yesterday, Mark Ellis is set to play second base this afternoon in a minor league game, his first action on defense this spring.
Today’s lineup vs. the Giants
*The lineup vs. Seattle
Williams pitching …