Oakland A’s: Mike Fiers injury not as bad as it could have been

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 01: Mike Fiers #50 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Chicago White Sox during the first inning of Game Three of the American League Wild Card Round at RingCentral Coliseum on October 01, 2020 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 01: Mike Fiers #50 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Chicago White Sox during the first inning of Game Three of the American League Wild Card Round at RingCentral Coliseum on October 01, 2020 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /
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It was easy to assume the worst when news of Mike Fiers‘ injury broke. The Oakland A’s pitcher has been battling a back ailment, only to have his return further delayed due to a setback that put him in danger of missing Opening Day. Fiers was scheduled to undergo an MRI in order to determine what the best course of action would be.

Fortunately for the A’s, the results were as positive as they could be. Fiers has inflammation in his back and hip, and will be shut down for a couple of days after receiving an injection.

Mike Fiers news as good as could be expected

This is really about as good of news as the A’s could have expected. Fiers may not be pushed back that much longer, and should he respond well to the injection, may be able to see some spring training action before the regular season starts.

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However, Opening Day is still very much in question. Fiers is unlikely to receive the work he would need in order to be ready for the beginning of April, especially as the start of the season is approximately two weeks away. He has yet to make his spring training debut, and will likely need to spend some time at the alternate site in order to be ready.

This leaves A.J. Puk and Daulton Jefferies as the candidates to take over in his absence. While the A’s would prefer that Puk take the role, he also has yet to make his spring training debut. In fact, given Puk’s injury history, it is uncertain as to whether or not he will remain in the rotation for the long term.

Jefferies, meanwhile, has pitched reasonably well thus far during the spring. He has allowed three unearned runs on three hits and two walks over his six innings, striking out seven. Although he does not have a long track record in the minors due to his own injury woes, he has pitched well throughout that time. If he does take on that fifth starter role, the A’s should be in good hands.

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Although Mike Fiers is not likely to be ready for Opening Day, the Oakland A’s received good news with his MRI. He should be back on the mound soon,

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