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Burns is sore, but feeling better; Doolittle throws off flat ground, bullpen scheduled for Thursday

Billy Burns is feeling better Saturday morning after fouling a ball off himself Friday night.  (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group)

Billy Burns is feeling better Saturday morning after fouling a ball off himself Friday night. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group)

SAN FRANCISCO — A’s outfielder Billy Burns said he feels better Saturday than he did the night before but he’s out of the starting lineup for the second game of this series with the Giants.

“I told the trainer I think I can play today, but he thinks it’s best if I rest,” Burns said. “I can still feel a little soreness but it’s a lot less pain than last night, so I think I’m good to go.”

Burns’ cringe-worthy injury was termed a testicular contusion and the rookie said it won’t cause to him to change his mind and begin wearing a cup.

A’s manager Bob Melvin won’t force him or any of his players to do so either.

“That’s a personal choice,” said Melvin, adding only that he thinks catchers should wear one.

Melvin said he wasn’t sure if Burns would be available off the bench, but the plan is for him to start Sunday’s series finale in San Francisco.

“We’ll see how the day goes,” Melvin said of using Burns off the bench. “I hope to have him tomorrow to start. I don’t know how you treat that, but I’m sure they have something they’re doing.”

n Sean Doolittle threw off flat ground for the first time in his rehabilitation stint for his strained left shoulder and the plan is for him to throw a bullpen session off the mound Thursday.

Doolittle missed the first 47 games of the year before returning to pitch in one game and going back on the disabled list. The 2014 All-Star said he feels much better during this rehab process.

“I feel really free and easy,” said Doolittle, who threw 10 fastballs, three changeups and two sliders during his 15-pitch session.

“I feel like I could throw 15 more easily. Before when I was going through it, I was emptying the tank. It took everything I had to get through my throwing program. I just thought that was part of the strengthening process, but now I feel like I’m at a point where I have a lot more bullets left. I’ve got a lot more confidence.”

n The A’s haven’t determined when Coco Crisp will begin a rehab stint. Melvin said “we’re still discussing that but we’re pretty close I think.”

Jimmy Durkin

Jimmy Durkin is a sports writer for the Bay Area News Group.