OAKLAND –- A’s starter Kendall Graveman suffered a strained left oblique that forced him from Sunday’s outing after six innings, and manager Bob Melvin said the rookie could be out a while.
Graveman felt his oblique “grab” on his second-to-last pitch facing Evan Longoria in the top of the sixth.
“I tried to go four-seamer away to Longoria, and I just felt it grab there at the end,” Graveman said. “It’s just one of those things. I never felt it before but it’s kind of what happened. We’ll see how it feels tomorrow and go get it checked out.”
As his teammates were set to fly to Seattle after the game, the plan was for Graveman to stay behind and get examined Monday in the Bay Area.
“He was going to go back out for the seventh” before the injury, Melvin said. “But we may be looking at an issue with him.”
Graveman’s next turn would come up Saturday at Arizona, but the A’s have a day off Thursday and technically don’t need a fifth starter until Sept. 1, the day when rosters expand. They could turn back to a starter such as Aaron Brooks, who is at Triple-A Nashville and already on the 40-man roster. From the current big league roster, Drew Pomeranz has starting experience.
Given there are just six weeks left in the season, it’s fair to speculate if Graveman will return at all this year. The A’s consider the 24-year-old right-hander a potential piece of their future rotation, and oblique injuries often linger with players. Oakland already is without young starter Jesse Hahn, who is sidelined by a forearm injury. The team is making a point not to rush Hahn back to throwing.