Sunday update

Talked to Joey Devine a bit ago. He said his elbow felt fine during a 32-pitch bullpen session off the mound this morning. He threw all of his pitches and said he’s on target to pitch in a minor league game Tuesday.

The Sunday morning happenings in A’s land:

–Eric Chavez took 25 swings on a back diamond behind Phoenix Municipal Stadium and said it went well. He mentioned this morning he’d take tomorrow off from hitting but may take regular batting practice w/the team Tuesday. Bob Geren was asked how it would be determined if Chavez could be ready for the start of the regular season. “If he feels good at the plate and he’s throwing the ball OK, he’s ready. But he has to get out there and test that shoulder swinging and throwing.”

–Geren expects shortstop Orlando Cabrera to miss another few days with his lower back tightness. Friday would be the earliest he’d return to the lineup. Considering the time he’s missed, Geren acknowledged the importance of getting Bobby Crosby a little time at shortstop, as well as the other infield spots. Crosby is starting at third today, w/Cliff Pennington at shortstop. About Cabrera, keep in mind he’s been one of the game’s most durable players over the years. He played 161 games last season.

–Justin Duchscherer is still scheduled to throw a bullpen session tomorrow. Joey Devine was set to throw a bullpen session today, but I haven’t talked to him yet.

–I wrote yesterday that Dallas Braden would start today against the White Sox. The A’s have decided to pitch him in relief, and give the start to Vin Mazzaro. Don’t read anything into that. Braden is set to throw on three days’ rest Thursday in a minor league game, when the A’s are off. His schedule got thrown off because he was scratched Saturday after getting a root canal.

Today’s lineup:

Buck RF
Suzuki C
Sweeney CF
Holliday LF
Ellis DH
Barton 1B
Crosby 3B
Pennington SS
Petit 2B

Mazzaro on the hill …

Joe Stiglich