Doolittle lands on DL with strained shoulder

Triggs, Coulombe recalled, Neal optioned

July 1st, 2016

OAKLAND -- The A's will be without left-hander Sean Doolittle until after the All-Star break. The reliever was placed on the disabled list Thursday with a strained left shoulder and underwent an MRI that revealed inflammation in the labrum.

There's no timetable for his return, but the issue is considered minor. Doolittle has been prescribed ice and rest, with no need for surgery or even an injection.

"Basically it's just really inflamed and swollen and kind of irritated," Doolittle said. "It's really scary when you hear you have an issue with your shoulder, your labrum particularly, but the trainers are optimistic once we get it calmed down, get the swelling out, that we'll be back in business."

Doolittle had been shelved since his 33-pitch outing in Anaheim on Saturday, later revealing that's when he felt his shoulder "barking a little bit." He has four saves and a 2.93 ERA in 35 appearances this season, after appearing in only 12 games last year because of two separate shoulder injuries -- both unrelated to this most recent flare-up.

"I'm incredibly frustrated because my shoulder was feeling good throughout the whole season, I felt like we found a maintenance program that was keeping me in a really good spot, I felt like I was bouncing back between outings really good and there weren't any warning signs," Doolittle said. "I'm frustrated there's something wrong in there right now, but I'm also very relieved because it's best-case scenario at this point."

The A's brought in a pair of bullpen reinforcements in time for Thursday's Bay Bridge Series finale with the Giants, recalling right-hander Andrew Triggs and left-hander Daniel Coulombe from Triple-A Nashville, while righty Zach Neal was optioned.

Triggs is entering his sixth stint with the A's this season, and Coulombe his fourth. Both appeared in Thursday's 12-6 loss to the Giants, with Triggs picking up 2 2/3 innings in relief of starter Dillon Overton. Coulombe followed with 2 1/3 innings, and neither allowed a run.

Coulombe, in particular, could see an extended opportunity in Doolittle's absence.

"He and Triggs both have had a tough go with the up-and-down thing," Melvin said. "They know the drill, and when we're healthy, we have certain guys that are going to be here. But this is really an opportunity to actually be in a situation where he might have to come in and get some of the better lefties out.

"He does have stuff for righties as well, and we'll probably be leaning on him a bit more than the past when he's been here."