By Tim Polzer
November 15, 2012

Pitcher Brandon McCarthy underwent brain surgery after being struck in the head by a line drive on Sept. 5. (Icon SMI)

Pitcher Brandon McCarthy has been medically cleared to resume his regular routine and baseball activities, less than three months after being struck in the head by a line drive and undergoing emergency brain surgery, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

McCarthy was cleared to begin working out after "rigorous" testing Monday and Tuesday by concussion expert Dr. Michael Collins, at the University of Pittsburgh.

“It’s a nice weight lifted, knowing everything is back to normal,” McCarthy told Susan Slusser by phone. “Dr. Collins was happy with everything,” McCarthy said. “It’s not at all what he expected to see, and they don’t just go on basic tests, it’s not like you can lie your way through it. It’s incredibly comprehensive and specialized.”

McCarthy, a free agent pitcher and Oakland's 2012 Opening Day starter, was struck by a line drive to the right side of his head off the bat of the Angels' Erick Aybar on Sept. 5.

He reportedly plans to begin playing catch next month, then start throwing bullpen sessions in January.

McCarthy said that while it will be nice to give teams a report saying he is fully cleared medically, it will not change anything in terms of his approach to free agency. McCarthy would like to return to Oakland, but he has drawn interest from numerous teams and the A’s suspect that he will get bigger offers that they cannot match.

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