Crisp might return Wednesday; Young not at 100 percent

Coco Crisp tested out his strained left hamstring on the bases on Monday, and manager Bob Melvin was so encouraged by the results that, for the first time, he said the outfielder could potentially return to the lineup when eligible Wednesday.

“It went really well,” Melvin said. “He ran full out, didn’t look like there was hesitation, so he’ll take batting practice, some balls in the outfield today, and if everything goes well today and tomorrow we’ll look to activate him Wednesday. But, again, we have to get there first.”

Melvin didn’t sound as optimistic about Chris Young, who is on the mend from a left quad strain. The outfielder homered in an extended Spring Training game Monday but “wasn’t 100 percent,” Melvin said. Young went 1-for-5 and played seven innings in center field.

“He could feel it a little bit, probably didn’t let himself go all the way running down the line, so we’ll see on Wednesday,” Melvin continued. “He’ll play again tomorrow. If we feel like we have to push it back with the off-day [Thursday], we can do that, but we’ll see where it goes.”

Crisp and Young, responsible for 13 of the club’s 26 stolen bases, have both been out since April 30, and in that time the A’s are 4-8.

“These are key guys for us, but you don’t want to make excuses for anything,” Melvin said. “We have depth in this organization, guys that we like, and it’s their opportunity to shine. I think we probably miss Coco at the top of the lineup as much as anything, because he’s our igniter, but you don’t make excuses. You play through them and try to do the best you can.”

At some point, whether by way of Crisp’s activation or Young’s, Michael Taylor is likely to be sent back to Triple-A Sacramento. He entered Monday with just one hit in 14 at-bats, after going hitless in six at-bats during his first stint with the club and 3-for-21 over two stints in Oakland last year.

These struggles put into question Taylor’s future with the organization. He’ll be 28 by year’s end, with more than 600 games played at the Minor League level.

“He just hasn’t had the quality at-bats he’d like to have,” Melvin said. “We still feel like the ability is there. It just hasn’t translated at this point. You look at Chris Carter, and he had a tough time and finally got more of an opportunity to play on a regular basis and figured it out and had a productive year. We’d like to think that’s the same way with Michael, because the ability is there.

“He hasn’t gotten consistent time, where he’s gotten four, five games in a row, and he might not, but we still hold out hope that his ability will take over and he will have success here at some point in time.”

It’s not clear who will join Taylor back in Triple-A when both Crisp and Young are reinstated, though the decision is expected to come down to Daric Barton — who would first have to clear waivers — or Luke Montz.

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