We’re more than a week into spring training, and the Oakland A’s first three games of the 2022 Cactus League are in the books. So far the team has enjoyed relatively strong health, knock on wood, oh no why did I type that at all please no jinx.
There have been reports of two new injuries so far, out of 64 players who began the spring in camp. Both reports are from last week, so we’re catching up on past news here.
First up is pitcher James Kaprielian, who enjoyed a promising rookie season in the rotation last summer. The right-hander “has AC joint [shoulder] irritation and will be a couple of weeks behind this spring,” reported Matt Kawahara of the S.F. Chronicle last Tuesday. Kaprielian was already throwing by then but the club wasn’t in a hurry to get him into a game until he’s ready, noted Kawahara in his full writeup.
Also out of action is outfielder Cody Thomas, who played at Triple-A Las Vegas last season and was added to the 40-man roster over the winter. Thomas “had an Achilles procedure and will not be available in camp,” reported Kawahara last Monday. The slugger might have competed for a spot in the rebuilding outfield this spring, but he’ll have to wait a bit longer for his chance.
The A’s made their first round of spring cuts on Sunday, optioning or reassigning 15 players down to the minors, including Thomas.
On a more positive health note, shortstop Elvis Andrus is healthy after fracturing his fibula at the end of last season. The 33-year-old has already played two games this spring and even put up a couple defensive highlights. He feels back to “100%” after his recovery, adds Kawahara.
Also healthy is pitcher A.J. Puk, who “added 25 pounds to his [6-foot-7] frame this offseason,” reported Kawahara last week. The lefty is expected to stretch out for a chance to be a starter, though his first spring appearance came out of the bullpen Saturday.