Programming note: A’s-Rangers coverage starts today at 4:30 p.m. with A’s Pregame Live on Comcast SportsNet California
ARLINGTON, Texas – Brandon Moss has been playing most of this season with a right hip injury, which could require off-season surgery and sideline the A’s first baseman into spring training.
Moss said he’s dealt with pain in his right hip since May, but only recently has it become a more serious issue. He went for an MRI on Monday that showed some torn cartilage in the hip. A cortisone shot received Wednesday is expected to keep him in playing shape through the rest of this season.
He’s starting in left field for Thursday night’s series opener against the Texas Rangers.
“It’s been bothering me a while, but I didn’t expect it to be what it was,” Moss said Thursday afternoon. “It’s one of those things where earlier in the year it would be there one day and then it wouldn’t bother me for quite a while.
"Then some days I’d come in and feel it and go get adjusted, and it would take some pressure off it. As the year went on, it just got progressively worse.”
Moss said he made the A’s aware of the injury early on, and the team has been monitoring it. So this is not a case of a serious problem being overlooked or neglected.
The bigger issue is how much the hip injury has affected a power hitter who went from an All-Star first half to hitting just .179 with four home runs and 15 RBI since the All-Star break.
Moss, a left-handed hitter, said the pain in his right hip began to hinder his ability to turn into a pitch while swinging, and push off when running.
“That’s when I said I’d like to get it looked at because it’s turning into something that I don’t really know what it is.”
Despite that, Moss said he doesn’t believe his second-half struggles should be blamed on his injury.
“As far as the way I felt at the plate, I didn’t feel any different,” he said. “There may have been some differences, but I didn’t feel that way. I just felt like I was swinging at bad pitches. … I have a hard time pinning all of my struggles on that.”
The exact course of treatment hasn’t been determined. Moss said the hip could require just a minor clean-up procedure. But if microfracture surgery is needed to repair the cartiliage, and if Moss had that procedure shortly after the A’s season ends, he said it would take “through spring training” to get him game-ready.
Figure that any timetable estimate for such a recovery shouldn’t be viewed as concrete at this point.