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Anderson's next start in question after ankle sprain

ST. PETERSBURG -- Brett Anderson is still scheduled to pitch Wednesday afternoon in Boston, but A's manager Bob Melvin admitted Saturday that his injury-plagued left-hander might not be able to make his next start.

Anderson, who sprained his right ankle in the first inning and was forced to leave the game against the Rays on Friday night, "felt better," according to Melvin, when he reported to Tropicana Field Saturday. However, Anderson's ankle was still slightly swollen, and he wore an air cast much of the day. The pitcher was instructed not to do anything except receive treatment on Saturday.

"We'll see how he feels tomorrow and go from there," Melvin said.

The A's do not have an off-day until May 2, so if Anderson does have to miss a start, Dan Straily, who was outstanding in his one start during the first week of the season and who is pitching well at Triple-A Sacramento, could be called up to replace him.

Anderson, who takes pride in his control, walked two Rays in his lone inning of work Friday night and has issued 11 base on balls in four starts this season (19 2/3 innings).

"He got behind in the count too often, and he wasn't locating his slider as well as he usually does," Melvin said in assessing Anderson's performance on Friday.

"I've got to cut down on the walks," Anderson admitted. "I'm a notorious command guy."

Jim Hawkins is a contributor to
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