ST. PETERSBURG, Fla -- When Kurt Suzuki was drilled on the left hand by a fastball Wednesday night, A's manager Bob Melvin feared the worst.
"When I first saw it, I thought potentially it was something bad," Melvin admitted Friday.
Not to worry. Suzuki was back in the lineup behind the plate against the Tampa Bay Rays Friday night.
"His hand is swollen, but not too bad," Melvin explained. "And he wanted to play. He's a little beat up. But he's a very tough kid. He plays with any number of injuries over the course of the season."
Friday marked Suzuki's 23rd start of the season behind the plate, which ties him for the Major League lead. Since 2008, he has started 539 games behind the plate, most in the Major Leagues during that time span.
Suzuki, who was hitless in five previous at-bats in his career against the Rays' David Price, drove Jonny Gomes home with a second-inning double to give the A's a 1-0 lead.