"It's going to be on another week or 10 days at least," A's manager Bob Melvin said, "so it's probably a stretch to think he would start another game for us. We're not completely saying that yet, but it looks like it might be difficult."
It would be a sour ending to an otherwise positive season for Blackburn, who debuted in July and proceeded to compile a 3.22 ERA across 10 starts. A pleasantly surprised group of A's decision-makers now has Blackburn penciled into the 2018 rotation.
"I'll tell you what, I never expected him to be in the position that he put himself in this year," Melvin said. "Coming out of spring, we never even saw extended outings from him, didn't get him a start. All he did was come up here and, at one point in time, he was probably our most effective starter for a stretch. He's definitely put his name in position for next year having a rotation spot."
With Blackburn out of the mix, right-hander Chris Smith will likely remain in the rotation through the remainder of the season.
Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010.