Athletics closer Sean Doolittle has a “slight” rotator cuff tear as well as significant inflammation in his left shoulder, MLB.com’s Jane Lee reports. The lefty received a platelet-rich plasma injection. Lee adds that the Athletics will be reevaluated later before deciding what to do next. At any rate, the club doesn’t expect him to be ready for Opening Day.
CSN Bay Area’s Joe Stiglich notes that the shoulder problem started when Doolittle began his off-season throwing program. Per Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, Athletics assistant GM David Forst doesn’t believe Doolittle will need surgery.
With Doolittle out, Tyler Clippard — acquired from the Nationals last week — should be first in line in save situations.
Doolittle, 28, is entering the second year of a five-year contract signed last April. Doolittle posted exceptional numbers in 2014, including a 2.73 ERA and an 89/8 K/BB ratio in 62 2/3 innings. He converted the save in 22 of 26 opportunities after being installed as the regular closer in mid-May.