OAKLAND, Calif. - Yoenis Cespedes returned to the batting cage Saturday, then the bench.
This time, he'll stay there a little longer.
The Oakland Athletics placed the powerful Cuban defector on the 15-day disabled list with a strained muscle in his left hand that has been bothering the center fielder for days. An MRI examination last week revealed the strain and no further tests are scheduled.
The Oakland Athletics’ Yoenis Cespedes is batting .245 with five home runs and 21 RBIs this season.
"Anytime it's a hand for a hitter, you want to make sure he's 100 percent before he goes out there," said A's assistant general manager David Forst. "We tried to treat it and have him play at the same time. Clearly, he wasn't feeling 100 percent, so we're going to be cautious at this point and have him do nothing until he can tell us there is absolutely zero pain there."
Cespedes, hitting .245 with five home runs and 21 RBIs this season, had declared himself "100 percent" healthy and ready to return earlier in the day, but later complained of discomfort in his hand and cut his batting practice short.
"It's not a bad injury. It's an injury that I can come back from quickly," Cespedes said after Oakland's 3-1 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Saturday, speaking through Ariel Prieto, the former A's pitcher who was called off his minor league coaching assignment this year to be Cespedes' interpreter and mentor as he adjusts to life in the United States.
Also, first baseman Kila Kaaihue of Oahu was a late scratch from the lineup. He strained a hamstring sliding into second base Friday, Forst said, but is not expected to land on the disabled list.