BALTIMORE — The Oakland A's pitching, which has been the most stable part of the club's roster for the first four months of the season, is due for another August change.
The A's will decide early next week if Bartolo Colon, or possibly Brett Anderson, will return to the rotation. And maybe both will return as starters
Colon, out with a strained left groin, will join the team Monday and throw a bullpen session before that game against the Tigers. This will be Colon's first bullpen session of the year. Between starts all year he's instead thrown on flat ground, manager Bob Melvin said, figuring that at 40, he ``only has so many bullets'' to throw.
If he checks out Monday, he could be inserted into the A's rotation on Thursday, although Melvin underscored that is just one of the club's options.
Anderson hasn't pitched in the big leagues since April thanks to a sprained right ankle and a stress fracture of his right foot. The plan is that he will join the A's on Monday as well, although it's not clear if he will be sent to throw another injury rehabilitation assignment start or if he'll just be added to the roster.
Following his every-fifth-day formula, he'd be due to pitch on Tuesday, which the A's have tentatively set as a return to the rotation for Tommy Milone.
Milone was originally scheduled to throw Saturday, but he was skipped over so that the A's could have two of their steadiest pitchers of the last couple of weeks, Jarrod Parker and Sonny Gray, make starts on regular rest.
Right now, the only pitcher Melvin has committed to for the Detroit series is Monday starter A.J. Griffin. Milone and Dan Straily are penciled in for Tuesday and Wednesday with Thursday open.
Should Anderson start Tuesday or Wednesday, Milone or Straily could be moved around in the rotation as the A's try to get through a stretch of 17 games without a day off in which four of their five opponents — Baltimore, Detroit, Tampa Bay and Texas — are playoff hopefuls.
--Josh Reddick was back in the lineup in right field Saturday for the first time since hurting his right wrist again Wednesday making a diving catch.
Reddick told Melvin he was ready to play Friday after being checked out by the club's medical crew, but the manager held off.
``You like to give players one extra day after they say they're ready,'' he said.
Asked if he would encourage Reddick to play a more conservative brand of defense where he wasn't diving as much as he does, Melvin said he wouldn't do so, that he's fine with Reddick playing the only way he knows how — all out.