ARLINGTON, Texas -- Dillon Overton will return from the minors to start Saturday night for the A's at Cleveland, filling the rotation spot left vacated by Daniel Mengden's demotion.
The A's remain hopeful that Rich Hill will be able to start Sunday, but that decision will be made after he throws a bullpen session Friday to see if the blister on his left middle finger is healed. His status will be monitored closely around the majors as Hill remains one of the top starting pitchers believed to be available as Monday's 1 pm non-waiver trade deadline approaches.
Overton seemed the likely choice to be called up Saturday. He's made three starts recently for the big club, and in his last taste of the majors, Overton held the Astros to three runs over 6 1/3 innings with no walks.
In three major league starts, the lefty is 1-1 with an 8.40 ERA. He is 10-4 with a 3.21 ERA with Triple-A Nashville.
Overton won his first career start against the Angels on June 25 but then gave up eight runs against the Giants. He came back up for a spot start and steadied himself against the Astros.
"You have a tough outing in the big leagues and get sent down, it's not the greatest feeling in the world," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "To come back and respond with the outing he did showed me a lot about him."
If Hill is unable to start Sunday, then Melvin said Sonny Gray would go on regular rest.
Sean Doolittle played catch out to 75 feet Tuesday for the first time since straining his left shoulder. He'll stretch out to 90 feet on Thursday, a sign that perhaps the reliever won't be far off from a rehab assignment.
Reliever Andrew Triggs, sidelined with a calf contusion, made his first rehab appearance with Nashville on Tuesday.