Sam Fuld took some batting practice early Saturday, suggesting he won’t need much time off after being hit in the jaw by a thrown ball.
Sam Fuld showed up at Hohokam Stadium Saturday with the left side of his jaw slightly swollen, the residue of having been hit there by an errant throw during Friday’s road game against the Rockies.
The Oakland outfielder had to go to a local hospital after being hit in the seventh inning. He had an abrasion on his jawline and said he had a cut on the inside of his mouth, but was otherwise well enough.
In particular he wasn’t having any nausea or headaches, and that was a major concern given his history with concussions, including one that had him on the shelf for five weeks last summer.
Barry Zito is creating a strong market for his services by looking sharper every time he throws.
Any given spring training game will see scouts from other organizations hanging around, so it can be difficult to tell when teams are interested in a player and when they are just window shopping.
The more Barry Zito throws this spring, the more interest he’s getting from teams that don’t have the overload of starting pitching the A’s do. Some teams are still window shopping, but more and more it seems that clubs in the pitching doldrums see Zito, throwing harder and with better break on his curve, as a potential solution to what ails their rotation.
Sam Fuld won’t back off the challenge jumping into outfield walls despite last year’s concussion.
There were many who were stunned earlier this week to learn that 24-year-old 49ers Chris Borland was retiring over concerns about concussions and long term brain damage.
A’s center fielder Sam Fuld was not one of those. Fuld was on the shelf for five weeks last year while playing with the Minnesota Twins thanks to a concussion brought on by a collision with a center field wall May 2 in Target Field while playing the Orioles.
Fuld actually played six games after the run-in with the wall, but the symptoms gradually got worse, including headaches, dizziness, fatigue and “real sensitivity to light and noise.’’
“We don’t do the bone-jarring things they do playing football,’’ the 33-year-old Fuld said. “But it was scary. I can absolutely relate to Borland. In football it seems they could do a lot of long-term damage with sub-concussive blows, day after day.
Drew Pomeranz had an impressive start against the Mariners Wednesday in his bid to return to the starting rotation.
Drew Pomeranz is closer than ever to starting the season in the A’s rotation after a four-inning, one-run five-strikeout effort in a 4-0 loss to the Seattle Mariners Wednesday.
Pomeranz took the loss, but with a 2.00 ERA, 15 strikeouts and a 1.333 WHIP in nine innings and a fastball that has honed in on the strike zone, he’s putting together the kind of resume that will land him in the middle of the Oakland rotation.
The 26-year-old Pomeranz wants to be a starter. It’s not just that he remembers fondly a seven-game stretch in May and June last year when he went 4-2 with a 1.88 ERA, a .199 opponents’ batting average and a 1.096 WHIP.
It’s that starting is what he knows. The 6-foot-5 left-hander has 54 big league games, and 40 of them as a starter. He also has exactly 54 minor league games, and all of those have been starts. He began and ended his first season with Oakland last year in the bullpen, and if he winds up there again, he’ll deal with it. But …
Jarrod Parker came through a 30-pitch session against hitters Wednesday feeling at the top of his game.
Jarrod Parker drew a larger than normal crowd for a pitcher throwing on the side in spring training Wednesday. It’s a measure of how much value the A’s place in his comeback from Tommy John surgery.
Parker threw 15 pitches against hitters, sat for a bit, then threw another 15 pitches, all the better to simulate game action without actually putting him in a game. He’s not due to pitch in the big leagues until the middle of the season, at least three months down the line.
And Parker, 25, is feeling good a year and a day after it was announced he’d be undergoing Tommy John ligament replacement surgery in his right elbow for the second time.
Ike Davis will DH for the A’s in one of the club’s two split-squad games Friday as he recovers from back pain.
The A’s decided against having Ike Davis DH Wednesday in Peoria against the Mariners, opting instead to have him wait until Friday, Thursday being the club’s one off day of the spring.
Manager Bob Melvin said Davis, who has been battling back pain for over a week has been cleared to play, but the decision was to wait until the A’s split-squad games Friday against the Dodgers and Rockies to get him back in the lineup as the DH.
“We figures what’s the purpose of driving 40 minutes or an hour for two at-bats, then have a day off,’’ Davis said. “I’m feeling good, I feel I could play, but we’ll just start it up on Friday.’’
Elsewhere on the injury front, the A’s are having Josh Reddick (right oblique) start taking some dry swings (no ball contact). He hopes to hit off a tee in a few days, then progress to batting practice. Reddick’s goal it to get enough at-bats in the final week of the spring to be in the opening day lineup, but right now it’s a coin flip.
Stephen Vogt feels confident his body will let him be ready come opening day.
It’s been just over a week since Stephen Vogt returned to the A’s lineup, and that period since March 9 has been enough to ease Vogt’s mind about his future behind the plate for Oakland.
“This time has taken a load off my mind,’’ Vogt said Tuesday morning. I knew I was feeling good, but there are a lot of little things you don’t know about how you’ll do until you just get back there and do them.
“And it weighs on you.’’
Vogt has played in five games, has just one hit and a .083 batting average, but in the wake of last October’s foot surgery, getting his swing right wasn’t the first thing on his plate.
Ike Davis hopes to be in A’s lineup Wednesday, but he’s yet to be cleared by medical crew as he recovers from back pain.
Ike Davis hopes to be in the A’s starting lineup Wednesday, but it’s a coin toss whether he’ll make it or not.
He’s still getting daily treatment for lower back pain, a malady he has never experienced before this year and one that “can really hurt.’’ He’s better, but he’s not without discomfort.
The projection was that he would be in the lineup as the DH on Wednesday, then get the team day off Thursday to recover.
Ryan Cook has been rocked his last two times out, but he says that’s “just baseball” and adds he’s feeling good.
Monday was a tough day for Ryan Cook.
He faced seven hitters and got one of them out. Trying to protect a 4-2 lead in the eighth inning in Glendale against the Dodgers, he gave up four hits, walked one and hit a batter. One of the hits was a grand slam from Los Angeles’s Darnell Sweeney.
All in all, not a great day.
Spring training can be forgiving however. Much more so than the regular season.
Craig Gentry has seen more than his share of promising young pitching in his half decade in the big leagues. What he sees in A’s rookie Kendall Graveman is at a higher level.
“I’ve been so impressed with what he’s been able to do this spring,’’ Gentry said after Graveman pitched 4.2 scoreless innings Monday in the A’s 10-5 loss to the Dodgers. “I’m so fortunate to be in center field where I can see him spot all of his pitches. He’s that good.’’
Graveman was fortunate to have Gentry in center field Monday, particularly in the fourth inning when the Dodgers’ Adrian Gonzalez hit a bomb to dead center. It seemed like a sure double, but Gentry ran it down.