ARLINGTON -- A's lefty Brett Anderson has his eyes set on postseason action, and the encouraging strides he's making in his rehab make it possible he could enjoy such a thing should the A's earn a playoff berth.
The 24-year-old Anderson, who sustained a strained right oblique last week, was scheduled to do some sock throwing on Wednesday in Texas. If all goes well, the lefty starter could be playing catch as soon as Thursday.
Once he surpasses that hurdle, Anderson will still have to undergo a handful of bullpen sessions before being deemed game ready, but given his progression, that time could come in the early goings of the playoffs.
And what a valuable asset Anderson would be to a rookie-laden A's rotation during that time. Still, manager Bob Melvin refuses to look too far ahead.
"I don't want to get too optimistic," he said. "We have a lot of work to do before we get to a potential place where he can pitch again. I certainly don't let that affect me right now, because we are where we are. But it is encouraging that he is at the point where he is right now. I know he's very excited about possibly being able to go out and play catch."
Correction makes Blackley a rookie
ARLINGTON -- There's a new rookie in town, and you may recognize him.
Travis Blackley was greeted with a "Hey, rook" every few seconds on Wednesday afternoon, after news surfaced that, despite entering the season negated of rookie status, he indeed has it.
A player shall be considered a rookie unless, during a previous season, he has exceeded 50 innings pitched or accumulated more than 45 days on the active roster. Blackley came into the season with 34 2/3 innings pitched and service time equaling one year and 42 days. The rookie tag is his to wear, though, since it came to be known that those totals are inaccurate.
Blackley really entered the season with only 42 days of service time, as his one year on the disabled list in 2006 was erroneously factored into the equation. So now the A's, who already celebrated rookie hazing day last week, are considering doing it again just for Blackley, a rookie at 29 years old.
"I said I'd do it," Blackley said smiling, "but I really think we have much more important things to worry about right now."
Blackley already participated in the always amusing dress-up day for rookies, going as a Hooters waitress in 2004 while with the Mariners. Now, he's simply concerned with his role as a starter in a rotation that, with his addition, boasts five rookies.
His newly deemed status as a rookie makes for a handful of impressive stats:
The A's have used 19 rookies overall, which is second most in Oakland history. They utilized 21 in 2008.
Of the 19 rookies, 12 are pitchers, which ties the Oakland record set in 2009.
Rookie pitchers have combined to set Oakland records for wins (48), appearances (294), innings pitched (795) and strikeouts (636).
Entering Wednesday, A's rookies have combined for 93 starts, which is tied with the 1983 club for second most in Oakland history. The record is 116, set in 2009.
A's hitters set AL strikeout record
ARLINGTON -- Chris Carter's strikeout in the second inning on Wednesday gave the A's 1,325 K's on the season, setting an American League record.
Oakland had whiffed 1,322 times entering the day. Only the 2007 Rays had done so more times in a regular season in the AL. The Major League record is 1,529, set by the D-backs in 2010.
Both the Rays and D-backs finished at the bottom of their division in those respective years, but the A's offense has helped the club into postseason contention.
"We have some guys that strike out a bit, but knock wood, we're working around some deficiencies," manager Bob Melvin said. "I think we've been pretty good about that all year. We'll have certain guys struggling in the lineup and others picking them up."
Josh Reddick entered the day with a team-leading 146 strikeouts, which is tied for eighth-most in the AL with the Rangers' Josh Hamilton.
A's outfielder Coco Crisp (pinkeye) was held out of the starting lineup for the 10th time in the last 11 games on Wednesday, though Melvin hopes his return is soon, after saying, "Looks a little better today." For a second straight day Crisp hit in the inside cages and participated in pregame workouts with his teammates.
"He's got to be fully comfortable, and we're still not at that point yet," Melvin said.
Lefty reliever Jordan Norberto (shoulder) began playing catch this week, but he's yet to throw off the mound. At this point, it's unlikely the versatile Norberto would be available for the early rounds of the playoffs, should the A's participate.
"I can tell you we've missed him," Melvin said. "He was a guy that was so valuable for us, a guy that always moved up into a role of a guy who wasn't available on a particular day. He's been as good a guy as any I've been around to be able to do that."