The Oakland Athletics dealt with a double dose of injuries even before Sunday night’s game against Los Angeles.
Derek Norris was the only catcher available, with Stephen Vogt limited to emergency duty and backup John Jaso headed to the seven-day concussion disabled list.
An MRI on closer Sean Doolittle showed a strained right intercostal, and he was placed on the 15-day disabled list.
Losing to the Angels 9-4, falling one game behind them in the AL West standings, may have been the least of Oakland’s problems.
“It’s several guys, key guys in a row with Jed (Lowrie) and (Nick) Punto,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said. “It’s just something else we need to deal with.”
Jaso, who missed most of last season with concussion-like symptoms, said the dizziness and fuzzy eyesight kept getting worst after he was hit in the mask by a foul ball two weeks ago.
“I’ve been kind of like muscling through the games, just powering through,” Jaso said. “But the symptoms escalated a little bit these past few days and it got to the point where it was a little iffy if I could keep going back there behind the plate and catch.”
Oakland made a trade with Texas to bring in catcher Geovany Soto, who has also been limited this year because of injuries. It also acquired minor league catcher Bryan Anderson from the Cincinnati Reds for international money.
“He’s been a starting catcher before and he’s a two-way guy,” Melvin said of Soto. “He’s not one you would say is a defensive specialist or just an offensive guy. He’s able to do both. And based on the last couple years, going from an everyday role to non-everyday role, knows how to deal with that.”
Dan Otero was recalled from Triple-A Sacramento to take Doolittle’s spot.
“I felt it on the second to last pitch last night,” Doolittle said. “I took a deep breath and tried to relax enough that I didn’t feel it until the follow through on my last pitch. It’s a good thing it happened that way because I would not have been able to go on.”
The A’s received some relatively good news from Josh Donaldson’s pregame MRI, which showed no structural damage to his left knee.
“It’s just how he feels,” Melvin said. “I wasn’t going to play him today no matter what. We’ll see how he is tomorrow in Houston.”
Athletics: Doolittle and Jaso are the sixth and seventh A’s players on the disabled list, joining INF Kyle Blanks, RHP A.J. Griffin, INF Jed Lowrie, INF Nick Punto and RHP Jerrod Parker. The A’s have now used the disabled list 18 times this year after using it 13 all of last year.
Athletics: RHP Jeff Samardzija (3-3, 4.07 ERA) takes the mound in Houston on Monday night. His five wins against the Astros are his most against any team.
The A’s managed four hits against Angels starter Jered Weaver through the first six innings. They got that many in the seventh against him, including a two-run homer from Alberto Callaspo and a solo shot from Andy Parrino. Eric Sogard added a sacrifice fly against Jason Grilli.
Oakland LHP Scott Kazmir matched his season high for hits (10) and runs (seven) in three-plus innings of work. “It was just location. I maybe hit one spot the whole game,” Kazmir said. “There were times I felt I could take control of the game, get two strikes on a guy and then throw one right down the middle. I felt like I wasn’t aggressive enough.” . The A’s were 0 for 8 with runners in scoring position.