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A’s place Aramis Garcia on injured list, recall Austin Allen

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One catcher sick, another one comes up from Triple-A to fill in

Detroit Tigers v Oakland Athletics Photo by Michael Zagaris/Oakland Athletics/Getty Images

The Oakland A’s entered the season with three catchers on their 40-man roster but only two on their active squad, and now the odd one out will get a chance in the majors.

The A’s placed catcher Aramis Garcia on the 10-day injured list, the team announced Tuesday. The diagnosis is viral enteritis, which is a fancy way of saying a stomach flu.

“It’s very contagious. But it’s not ‘THE’ virus,” said manager Bob Melvin, per insider Martin Gallegos. In other words, he’s sick but it’s not coronavirus.

The 28-year-old Garcia has started 11 games behind the plate and one at DH this season, behind primary backstop Sean Murphy. Garcia is considered a glove-first catcher with some power in his right-handed bat, but so far he hasn’t made enough contact to flex it often.

  • Garcia, 2021: 5-for-37 (.135), 16 wRC+, 1 HR, 2.5% BB, 35.0% Ks, .179 xwOBA

In his place, Austin Allen was recalled from Triple-A. Allen is essentially the opposite of Garcia, a lefty hitter with a bat-first profile. He played 14 games for Oakland last year.

  • Allen, 2020: 6-for-31 (.194), 47 wRC+, 1 HR, 3.1% BB, 43.8% Ks, .168 xwOBA

Both Garcia and Allen have little to nothing left to prove in the minors, and their next step is a matter of making the jump to MLB and sticking there. So far neither has hit enough in their limited opportunities to force the issue, and now nature is making the call to give Allen a turn in May.

Pitching updates

In other injury news, pitcher A.J. Puk threw 30 pitches in a bullpen session on Tuesday, reports Gallegos. “His next outing will be against hitters,” adds Gallegos. The lefty has been out for nearly a month due to a strained biceps.

Meanwhile, reliever Burch Smith will make a rehab appearance for Triple-A Las Vegas on Thursday, reports Shayna Rubin of the Mercury News. Smith has been on the IL since the first week of April due to a strained right groin.

Roster and injury reports

Here’s the updated 26-man roster.

Oakland A's 26-man roster
Pitchers Hitters
Starters

Chris Bassitt (R)
Sean Manaea (L)
Frankie Montas (R)
Cole Irvin (L)
Mike Fiers (R)

IL: Jesús Luzardo (L)

Relievers

Lou Trivino (R)
Jake Diekman (L)
Yusmeiro Petit (R)
Sergio Romo (R)
Deolis Guerra (R)
Reymin Guduan (L)
Adam Kolarek (L)
Jordan Weems (R)

IL: A.J. Puk (L)
IL: Burch Smith (R)
IL: J.B. Wendelken (R)
60-IL: Trevor Rosenthal (R)
Catchers

Sean Murphy (R)
Austin Allen (L)

IL: Aramis Garcia (R)

Infielders

1B: Matt Olson (L)
2B: Jed Lowrie (S)
SS: Elvis Andrus (R)
3B: Matt Chapman (R)
DH: Mitch Moreland (L)
UT: Tony Kemp (L)
UT: Vimael Machin (L)

Outfielders

Mark Canha (R)
Ramon Laureano (R)
Stephen Piscotty (R)
Seth Brown (L)

IL: Chad Pinder (R)

Updated injury report:

  • RHP Trevor Rosenthal, 60-day IL, thoracic outlet surgery (July at least)
  • UT Chad Pinder, 10-day IL, knee (start rehab 5/10?)
  • LHP A.J. Puk, 10-day IL, biceps (threw bullpen session 5/4)
  • LHP Jesús Luzardo, 10-day IL, finger (no timetable yet)
  • RHP J.B. Wendelken, 10-day IL, oblique (no timetable yet)
  • RHP Burch Smith, 10-day IL, groin (AAA rehab on 5/6)
  • C Aramis Garcia, 10-day IL, illness (but not coronavirus)