In for Hickey …
A remarkably quiet night at the O-Dot-Co before the A’s and Jays square it up. Back in the late ’80s when these two teams met, it was THE matchup in the American League. That could change at any time with less than 24 hours before the trade deadline, and knowing Billy Beane, I would expect something from him, even if it’s not Jake Peavy.
For now, it’s about Brett Anderson. The lefthander threw his latest bullpen sssion before the game — 57 pitches — and he was really popping it. He looks close to being ready to pitch in a rehab game, perhaps by early next week, and he said as much after B.P.
“I threw all my pitches and it went well,” Anderson said. “I’ll come in tomorrow and see how I feel and go from there. I have a live BP set up for Friday. It will be good to get some swings against me and see how hitters react to my pitches. Now, I’m just honing in and making sure my arm strength’s good and make sure all my pitches are doing what they’re supposed to.”
What is he most pleased about at this stage?
“That my foot doesn’t hurt,” Anderson said. “Going from where I was a couple weeks or a month ago to where I am now has been a big jump. My body feels good, my arm feels good.”
Said manager Bob Melvin, “He was little more worried about the foot, but at this point, he really has no issues with it at all. He really got after it today.”
Melvin said he would announce Wednesday what the next step would be, but Anderson pretty much spilled the beans, unless the A’s decide he’s so ready, they put him in a rehab game right away.
–Even though the A’s have three off days coming up over the next 10, they won’t change their rotation, said Melvin. “As we are right now, we’ll stay on turn,” he said.
–Melvin on the trade deadline: “I always expect other teams to do something and don’t get too caught up in what we’re trying to do because we’re playing pretty well, we have a good team, and regardless of what happens, we’re going to have a good team. So, Billy’s been through this many times before and he’ll do the right thing.”
–A double bit of good news for Eric Sogard, even if he isn’t in the lineup. First, the pitch he took on the elbow is sore but he’s more than well enough to play. Second, there was a scoring change from Monday night’s game that reversed an error and gave him a hit, reigniting a hitting streak that now stands at eight games.
–Melvin isn’t too worried about A.J. Griffin having surrendered 26 homers, most in the AL. He said Griffin pitches to the situation, and very few of the homers have really hurt him other than inflating his ERA. Of the 26 homers allowed, by the way, only 7 have come with men on base. That’s the way Catfish Hunter used to do it. He gave 39 homers (26 of those solo) in 1973 and finished 21-5 with a 3.34 ERA. Griffin’s 10-7 with a 3.90.
Finally, congrats to former Athletic Jason Giambi for becoming the oldest player ever to hit a walkoff homer for the Indians last night. That was great to see. What’s hard to believe is that the guy is 42.