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Cotton pushed back to allow blister to heal

Right-hander now scheduled to start Saturday against Braves
MLB.com @JaneMLB

HOUSTON -- A's right-hander Jharel Cotton won't start Thursday, as originally planned. Instead, Oakland will send righty Daniel Gossett to the mound for the series finale in Houston, allowing Cotton extra time for his right thumb blister to heal.

Cotton threw a bullpen session without any issues Wednesday afternoon at Minute Maid Park, and the righty said he's on track to start Saturday's home matchup with the Braves, which manager Bob Melvin confirmed.

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HOUSTON -- A's right-hander Jharel Cotton won't start Thursday, as originally planned. Instead, Oakland will send righty Daniel Gossett to the mound for the series finale in Houston, allowing Cotton extra time for his right thumb blister to heal.

Cotton threw a bullpen session without any issues Wednesday afternoon at Minute Maid Park, and the righty said he's on track to start Saturday's home matchup with the Braves, which manager Bob Melvin confirmed.

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"We'll see how it goes and what they want to do," Cotton said, "but it's healed. I've just got to get the skin toughened, so I'm going to get my treatment and, hopefully, be back out there Saturday."

Right-hander Sonny Gray will start Friday's game vs. Atlanta, with lefty Sean Manaea still in line to pitch Sunday to conclude the Interleague series at the Coliseum.

Melvin sticks with same lineup

For just the second time this season, the A's had the same starting lineup on consecutive days on Tuesday and Wednesday.

"Amazing, isn't it?" Melvin said. "It doesn't happen often with us, but we feel like there's some parts that are in place right now."

The A's have used 74 different lineups in 78 games. Last season, Melvin utilized 144 different lineups.

Worth noting

• Right-hander Daniel Mengden hasn't pitched since being optioned to Triple-A Nashville on June 4 because of an injury. Mengden, who is on the disabled list, has been dealing with what the organization believes is a stress reaction in his ribs, A's general manager David Forst said.

However, Mengden is on the mend and engaging in a throwing program in Arizona. He struggled in both of his starts with the A's upon his May promotion, allowing nine runs over eight total innings, after spending the beginning of the season recovering from right foot surgery.

• Shortstop Marcus Semien (right wrist surgery) went 2-for-4 at designated hitter in a rehab game with Class A Advanced Stockton on Tuesday night. He's 6-for-14 (.429) during his rehab assignment and, following a scheduled day off Wednesday, is slated to play nine innings in the field Thursday.

• Right-handers Kendall Graveman (shoulder) and Ryan Dull (right knee) are expected to throw off the mound this weekend for the first time since going on the disabled list.

Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010.

Oakland Athletics, Jharel Cotton