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A’s get bad news on starting pitcher Jharel Cotton

MESA, Ariz. — A’s pitcher Jharel Cotton’s strong start to the spring just took a big hit.
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After another impressive outing which saw Cotton hold the Giants hitless through four innings of work with three walks and five strikeouts Monday, manager Bob Melvin revealed Tuesday morning that the reason for Cotton’s somewhat early exit from the game was due to elbow soreness he had mentioned in the dugout.
Melvin had noticed a drop in velocity on Cotton’s fastball in the third and fourth inning, and had suspected something was wrong with the pitcher. After consulting with team trainers, the club decided to send Cotton back to the Bay Area. He will go see Dr. Will Workman in Walnut Creek on Wednesday and undergo an MRI Thursday.
“He’s going home, so there’s a concern,” Melvin said. “He’s not gonna make his next start.”
Aside from top prospect A.J. Puk, Cotton had been the most impressive pitcher on the A’s this spring. Through four games, Cotton had posted a 3.75 ERA, striking out 16 batters in 12 innings with only six walks.
Cotton was expected to be a part of the starting rotation coming out of spring training. Should Cotton have to miss an extended amount of time, Melvin said the injury could open up the door for Andrew Triggs to find himself a spot in the rotation.
Triggs has impressed the club this spring coming back from left hip surgery last season. In his most recent outing Sunday against the Cubs, Triggs closed out the game with three perfect innings, striking out four batters in the victory.
 
“For a guy coming back form surgery, he seems to be more comfortable every time he’s out there,” Melvin said. “He’s pitched really well, and that’s one of those starter guys that we haven’t talked about a whole lot.”

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