Well, the A’s may be out of luck. The team has been bit by the infamous injury bug that resides in the depths of the cavernous O.co Coliseum all season long and there’s no clear solution to Oakland’s injury woes in sight.
The A’s are now without starting pitcher Brandon McCarthy, who has been off to a strong start this year, due to a shoulder strain. The right-hander has been placed on the 15-day DL with a right shoulder strain and for a young team like Oakland, losing a veteran in McCarthy does not bode well for the rest of the rotation.
McCarthy had been on quite a tear this month, going 2-0 with a 2.37 ERA in three May starts. Losing McCarthy only adds yet another name on a growing list of Oakland players limping through the clubhouse; Coco Crisp, Yoenis Cespedes, and Brandon Inge are some of the other notable names currently riding the DL express train.
It is too bad that Dr. Gregory House does not exist, because the A’s could really use some of his medical remedies. Since we’re living in reality and not on the set of House, it is best to keep things in perspective. The A’s have had problems with keeping their players healthy and this season is no different. Losing players is never an easy thing to get over, but for the A’s, a team with relatively no well-known players, it is especially more painful to endure.
The team’s rotation came into the season without Dallas Braden and Brett Anderson, but with plenty of young talent, the A’s figured they could get by without Anderson or Braden. Losing McCarthy, though, does put quite the dent in Oakland’s starting rotation.
The A’s rotation, without McCarthy, includes Bartolo Colon, Tom Milone, Jarrod Parker, and Tyson Ross. Colon has gone 4-4 with a 4.09 ERA in 10 starts with Oakland this season. Milone, a nice addition this past offseason, has been solid as well, going 5-3 with a 4.09 ERA in 8 starts. Parker, a top pitching prospect, has gone 1-2 with a 3.90 ERA in five starts. Finally, there’s Ross. Ross has gone 2-4 with a 5.73 ERA in 7 starts.
The A’s have plenty of other pitchers waiting down in the minor leagues, but the guy the team called up to take McCarthy’s spot on the rotation is right-handed reliever Jim Miller. Miller last pitched for the team’s Triple-A affiliate, the Sacramento River Cats. He was with the team for a brief stint in April before getting optioned back to Sacramento earlier this month.
If the team has any shot at remaining somewhat relevant in the AL West this year, they’ll need to find a way to stay healthy. Paging imaginary Doctor now.