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Henderson Alvarez shoulder problems crop up again; A’s shut down his rehabilitation assignment for second time

Henderson Alvarez had hoped to join A's rotation this week. He won't.

Henderson Alvarez had hoped to join A’s rotation this week. He won’t.

The riddle that is Henderson Alvarez’s right shoulder jumped back into the forefront with the A’s Sunday with the news that he had more shoulder pain during what was supposed to be his final injury rehabilitation assignment start Saturday night in Nashville.

After pitching three innings without difficulty, Alvarez went out to start the fourth inning against Round Rock and felt a recurrence of the shoulder pain that has plagued him off and on. He had shoulder surgery last July and then in what was supposed to be his last rehab start May 15 had to be shut down after five innings.

“He was feeling some pain,’’ manager Bob Melvin said. “We’ve shut him down. Unfortunately when we have him right on the verge of getting him back here, something pops up.

“It’s a setback. Is it worse? That’s tough to tell. He said there was pain in the shoulder. He was aware enough to stop. But where we go from here, we’re not sure yet.’’

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A’s cannot ‘solve’ Tim Lincecum, lose to Angels 7-1

Los Angeles Angels' Tim Lincecum pitches against the Oakland Athletics in the second inning at Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, Calif., on Saturday, June 18, 2016. (Jim Gensheimer/Bay Area News Group)

Tim Lincecum allows one run over six innings in his Angels debut on Saturday at the Coliseum. (Jim Gensheimer/Bay Area News Group)

OAKLAND — A’s manager Bob Melvin countered Tim Lincecum’s season debut with an assembly line of pitchers Saturday.

But, collectively, they were no match for the newest Angel.

Solo home runs by Mike Trout and Johnny Giavotella erased an A’s lead in the fourth inning, and the Angels erupted for five runs in the sixth on their way to a 7-1 victory before an announced crowd of 25,078 at the Coliseum.

Lincecum, who generated plenty of cheers from a mix of Angels and Giants fans, allowed one run and four hits over six innings in his first big league game not in orange and black.

“We couldn’t solve him,” Melvin said. “Give him credit.”

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A’s pitcher Kendall Graveman doesn’t get win, but goes season-best seven strong innings in 3-2 win over Angels

Kendall Graveman threw seven innings and gave up one run against the Angels.

Kendall Graveman threw seven innings and gave up one run against the Angels.

OAKLAND _ For a brief moment, A’s pitcher Kendall Graveman had a win he richly deserved Friday night. Then he didn’t.

As it turned out, the A’s got the win anyway, beating the Los Angeles Angels 3-2 on a ninth-inning RBI single by Billy Burns, but Graveman ended up with a no decision after pitching his best game of the season before a fireworks night crowd of 24,591 at the Coliseum. Continue Reading

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A’s struggle to fill Saturday starting slot; it won’t be Alvarez

Henderson Alvarez will pitch Saturday, but for Nashville and not A's.

Henderson Alvarez will pitch Saturday, but for Nashville and not A’s.

The A’s still don’t have a listed starter for Saturday, but they know who won’t be starting against the Angels – Henderson Alvarez.

Not that the subject hasn’t come up. Alvarez will join Triple-A Nashville Saturday for what is expected to be his final injury rehabilitation start, an expected 70-pitch stint. So the A’s did think briefly about skipping Nashville and plugging Alvarez into the Oakland rotation.

Ultimately they decided that was tempting fate. A month ago when Alvarez was making what was then thought to be his final injury rehab start, he felt some discomfort in his shoulder and had to be shut down for over a week, then get gradually built back up.

“It has crossed our minds,’’ manager Bob Melvin said. “But at this point that’s not going to be the case. Based on what happened last time he really needs to get to that threshold. Trust me, I’d love to do it, even if we knew it was going to be 70 pitches. It would be really exciting and he’d be excited about it, too.

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Rangers stun A’s with five-run sixth inning off Sonny Gray, relievers give up two solo homers in 7-5 loss

Sonny Gray gave up five runs in the sixth inning to the Rangers.

Sonny Gray gave up five runs in the sixth inning to the Rangers.

OAKLAND _ The A’s were cruising with Sonny Gray at the top of his game and a five-run lead, which made the end result that much more difficult to stomach.

“It was pretty shocking, actually,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said after a 7-5 loss to the Texas Rangers Wednesday night at the Coliseum. “I’ve seen him take stuff like that to the mound and throw shutouts with it.” Continue Reading

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Can the A’s wait two weeks for rotation help to arrive?

Rich Hill believes he is two weeks away from returning to A's rotation.

Rich Hill believes he is two weeks away from returning to A’s rotation.

There’s a reason to believe the next two weeks are crucial for the A’s.

Not for getting back into contention, mind you. Just for getting back into competitiveness.

Contention is a way off just now with the A’s 12½ games out of first place in the American League West.

Oakland is 10 games under .500 at 27-37, and the A’s haven’t distinguished themselves in June (3-8) after a terrible May (11-17).

The 11-man disabled list – the 11th man landed there Tuesday, starting pitcher Sean Manaea – could be going on a diet. Reliever Liam Hendriks is due to come off the disabled list in the next week or so.

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Sean Manaea to DL with pronator strain; Eric Surkamp up

Sean Manaea is on the 15-day DL with a left pronator strain.

Sean Manaea is on the 15-day DL with a left pronator strain.

To no one’s great surprise, the A’s are using the disabled list for a 16th time in 10 weeks with left-hander Sean Manaea headed to the DL.

Manaea came out of Monday’s game against the Rangers feeling discomfort in his left forearm. He’d been having a little issue with the forearm for a while, but the problem became particularly acute Monday when he came out of the game after 4.1 innings.

The A’s were leading Texas 9-2 at the time and he would have been eligible for the win had he remained in the game for two more batters. That didn’t happen.

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