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A’s giving Sonny Gray extra time between starts

Jun 23, 2014, 11:19 AM EDT

Sonny Gray Getty Getty Images

Whenever a team skips a young starter’s turn in the rotation it leads to questions about the health of that young starter, especially after the Cardinals did that with Michael Wacha last week while claiming they were simply giving him “rest.” And now he’s on the disabled list with a shoulder injury.

This time it’s the A’s giving 24-year-old Sonny Gray some extra time off between starts, with manager Bob Melvin telling Joe Stiglich of that it’s merely “a little bit of a break” and nothing to do with any arm problems.

Oakland will restructure the rotation around a pair of off days and in doing so Gray will get nine days off between starts rather than the usual four.

Gray had a very impressive debut for the A’s last season and has picked up right where he left off this year, starting 15 games with a 2.91 ERA and 86/34 K/BB ratio in 99 innings. They’ve been relatively cautious with his workload by not letting Gray go past 115 pitches in any start and letting him top 110 pitches just once, but he has topped 100 pitches in five consecutive outings leading up to this extra time off.

  1. clydeserra - Jun 23, 2014 at 11:45 AM

    starting pitching depth is an issue with the A’s. Losing Parker and Griffin (#2 and #4 coming into the season) were the big blows.

    Jesse Chavez and Sonny Gray have not pitched full seasons. Scott kazmir is a wild card, he may be ready for 200 innings,but we won’t really know until the end of the season. Milone (the #6 starter coming into the season) is the only one that has put up lots of innings in the past.

    Lots and lots of talk around the A’s this year has been about the lack of innings for the starters. The A’s have 2 off days this week, its a perfect time to skip someone. I bet it happens again with someone the week of August 18 when they have a similar schedule.

    • APBA Guy - Jun 23, 2014 at 2:57 PM

      Exactly. I pointed out that the A’s loss of 550 IP (150 Bartolo, 200 each from Parker and Griffin) meant that inevitably a couple of guys who were unproven going deep into the year would have to be rushed into service. So far it has more than worked out, but the A’s are wise to give the young guys some rest, like they did with Chavez last week, and also to keep a close eye on Straily’s maturation at AAA. Come August, he may be needed.

  2. karystrance - Jun 23, 2014 at 5:51 PM

    Much better to rest him occasionally so he’s strong for the playoffs instead of shutting him down early like the dopey Nationals did to Strasberg.

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