Melvin needs to sit Khris Davis until he is ready for the stretch run

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SEATTLE, WA - MAY 14: Khris Davis #2 of the Oakland Athletics reacts to striking out in the second inning against the Seattle Mariners at T-Mobile Park on May 14, 2019 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - MAY 14: Khris Davis #2 of the Oakland Athletics reacts to striking out in the second inning against the Seattle Mariners at T-Mobile Park on May 14, 2019 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images) /
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It’s still too early in the season for the A’s to risk hurting their $17 million silver slugger, even at 24-25 and nine games back of the Astros.

Bob Melvin announced Tuesday night that the Oakland A’s would be placing Khris Davis on the injured list after once again aggravating his left hip injury, putting a damper on the 5-3 win, the A’s fifth in a row.

Melvin pulled Davis after his first at-bat, replacing him with Mark Canha, who hit a two-run home run in the third inning.

Davis has missed five games since he barrelled into the left-field wall on May 5 in the A’s 3-5 loss to the Pirates, and the discomfort has spread from his hip to his oblique, according to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle.

We won’t know how bad it is until Davis’s MRI tomorrow, but regardless the A’s should proceed with caution.

Even before his injury, Khris Davis was in a cold spell at the plate, going 20 games in between his 10th home run on April 12 and his 11th and 12th on May 13.

In that stretch, the A’s went 9-15, only scoring five-or-more runs five times.

They also welcomed back Matt Olson, who has hit four home runs and helped Oakland to a 9-6 record since his return on May 7. 

But Oakland can’t afford to let Davis’s injury fester any longer, especially as a whole crop of players ready to return into the fold.

Before the season even began, virtually the entire projected starting rotation – Sean Manaea, Jharel Cotton and prized lefty prospects A.J. Puk and Jesus Luzardo – were all out of commission, Manaea for potentially the entire season.

They faced a similar problem last season, putting out a duct tape rotation and relying on a bullpen that eventually led to their loss in the AL Wild Card game. They don’t want to have the same issue with their offense, which has carried the load for the last few years.

This team can survive with or without Khris Davis for a time but will need him down the stretch when they make their inroads to a playoff berth.

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But he won’t be healthy and ready to rake unless the A’s hold him out until he’s good to go. It’s a long season, and the A’s more than any team know that what matters in May and June is not nearly as important as what matters in August and September.

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