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Oakland A's call up Brad Mills to start Friday, option Arnold Leon, designate Taylor Thompson for assignment

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland Athletics have called up left-handed pitcher Brad Mills to start Friday night's game against the Baltimore Orioles after skipping Sonny Gray's scheduled Thursday start due to his back spasms. To clear space on the active roster, the A's optioned right handed reliever Arnold Leon to Triple-A. The A's also designated right-handed reliever Taylor Thompson for assignment, meaning there are still 39 players counting against the 40 player limit. 60-day DL players Sean Doolittle and Tyler Ladendorf are both on rehabilitation assignments, with Doolittle expected to rejoin the A's for the next homestand.

This is Mills' second visit to the A's starting rotation. He made some spot starts with the A's after famously being acquired for a dollar from the Milwaukee Brewers before the club acquired Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel in early July 2014, when Mills was picked up by the Blue Jays. Mills signed a minor league deal with the A's last offseason. This season with Triple-A Nashville, Mills has struck out 84 and walked 49 in 127⅓ innings, compiling a 4.52 ERA and 4.61 FIP. Mills was on turn to pitch for Nashville today.

Arnold Leon finishes his fifth trip on the A's active roster, making two relief appearances this time. He allowed Chris Davis' 10th inning grand slam on August 5 but completed two scoreless innings of work against the Toronto Blue Jays on August 11.

The A's claimed Taylor Thompson last November but was put on the 60-day disabled list early in spring training with right shoulder tightness. He came off the disabled list not long ago, and made four relief appearances with Triple-A Nasvhille. He struck out three and walked three in 4⅓ innings while allowing three runs, none of them earned.