MESA, Ariz. – Not all was upbeat for the A’s on a day that Jim Harbaugh made a surprise visit to camp.
It was announced Saturday that right fielder Josh Reddick will be held out of baseball activity for two weeks due to a strained right oblique, making it unlikely he will be ready for the April 6 regular season opener.
Reddick suffered the injury while pulling himself up the outfield fence during a defensive drill Friday. In the immediate aftermath, he estimated he would be out three or four days and then get re-evaluated. Manager Bob Melvin also expressed optimism Reddick wouldn’t be sidelined long.
But oblique injuries can be very slow to heal – Reddick missed two months in 2009 with a severe oblique strain on his left side – and the team determined prolonged rest is needed.
“We know for sure he’s not going to do anything for two weeks, and then it’s a progression to get him ready again,” Melvin said. “You have to start from zero again. I would think Opening Day would be a stretch, but he has been a quick healer.”
With Reddick out, the A’s have just five healthy outfielders on the 40-man roster right now and one non-roster outfielder in Jason Pridie. So it stands to reason that Mark Canha might see more time in the corner outfield spots in addition to first base. Billy Burns and Alex Hassan will get more playing time . Melvin also said he’ll look to get first basemen Ike Davis and Matt Olson some outfield innings, as well as infielders Alden Carrithers and Tyler Ladendorf.
Pridie, a journeyman who has seen major league time with five teams over the past six years, has a home run and three RBI in four games so far and has received praise from Melvin.
“He’s taking great batting practice, he’s getting hits in games. He can play all three positions in the outfield,” Melvin said. “With only six roster outfielders and one non-roster outfielder -- he being that guy -- sometimes it’s the right place at the right time. He’s going to get some increased opportunities and he’s excited about that.”
In other news, left-hander Drew Pomeranz will make his first Cactus League start Sunday against the Chicago White Sox.