OAKLAND -- Coco Crisp had an X-ray last night on ribs after landing hard diving for a ball in the sixth inning, but that test came back negative and Crisp is in the lineup again for the A’s tonight, manager Bob Melvin said.
Crisp was checked by trainers after the dive but stayed in the game in the A’s 4-3 loss on Monday night. Melvin said after the game the center fielder had landed on the same spot on another recent dive, so the A’s wanted to be cautious. He said he’ll likely give Crisp a day off in Wednesday’s series finale, a day game.
"This is a guy that, based on our experiences here with him, he plays at a very high level, plays hard, he’s always diving on the ground and we’ve got to make sure he’s healthy to get through a season," Melvin said.
For tonight, though, the A’s lineup features both Crisp and Yoenis Cespedes, who did not start Monday due to a bruised right heel but will start tonight against Rangers righty Nick Martinez. Here’s the full A’s lineup:
The Rangers, meanwhile, do not have their regular leadoff hitter available tonight. Shin-Soo Choo sprained his left ankle running to first base Monday, so it’s Michael Choice in the leadoff spot for Texas. Here’s the full Rangers lineup against Tommy Milone:
* The John Jaso in the No. 2 spot experiment didn’t last long -- Jaso batted second in the opener and struck out four times. He also singled and stole a base on the back end of a double-steal. A’s stats guru Mike Selleck tweeted today that Jaso is the first major-league catcher since at least 1914 to have four strikeouts and a steal in the same game.
* Reliever Eric O’Flaherty, who’s recovering from Tommy John surgery, threw another bullpen session at the Coliseum this afternoon and Melvin said he looked "really good." Melvin said O’Flaherty threw 35 pitches and, for the first time, threw all of them with the catcher at full distance -- breaking balls included.
"Matter of fact, I asked him if he’s got an inning in him today," Melvin said.
That was obviously a joke, but it’s encouraging news for O’Flaherty, and Melvin said it’s getting close to the point for the A’s to start mapping out a schedule of rehab assignments for O’Flaherty.
* One seeming trend with baseball replay reviews so far is that the longer the review takes, the less likely it is the call will be overturned. But that was tested last night as Melvin won a challenge on a safe call at first after a review that took 3:45.
Melvin said that might have been because there was one particular replay angle showing Choo, who’d been called safe on a bang-bang play, was actually out, and that it might’ve just taken the replay officials a while to find that angle. Either way, Melvin won his first challenge -- he’s now 1-for-5.
"It really isn’t about your percentage being right all the time," he said. "I think it’s more about doing the best you can and trying to use it for a call that potentially is impactful in the game."
* The A’s remain the only team in the majors not to lose consecutive games this season. They’ll try to keep that going tonight behind Milone who makes his third start. He hasn’t had much success against the Rangers in his career -- Milone is 1-4 with a 5.06 ERA in six career starts. Fortunately for him, the Rangers are still without Adrian Beltre, who is 7-for-17 with two homers against Milone. So there’s that.