If you missed the second inning, you missed all the offense tonight. The A’s five-run rally in the second, highlighted by Ryan Sweeney’s two-run homer, was all the scoring they needed. Another tag-team effort from the bullpen salted away the victory after Josh Outman lasted just 4 1/3 innings.
It was the second straight game Sweeney has batted sixth, and he said afterward he feels more at ease than he did batting leadoff. “I just feel more relaxed,” he said. “I may have put pressure on myself to get on base and make something happen (in the leadoff spot).”
So, Orlando Cabrera and Kurt Suzuki have batted 1-2 over the past two games, and the offense has responded with two encouraging efforts. How much credit should go to Bob Geren’s lineup shuffle? Tough to say for sure.
I’ll be curious to see what happens if new second baseman Adam Kennedy is inserted in the lineup for tomorrow’s game, as Geren said is likely to happen. Where would he hit? Would it upset whatever chemistry has developed?
I’d put him in the eighth or ninth spot right now, thinking maybe he can get on base and help turn the lineup over. But who gets bumped from the lineup? And from the 25-man and 40-man rosters to make room for him?
The A’s currently have six outfielders (including Jack Cust), so maybe they offer Rule 5 pick Ben Copeland back to the Giants. If not, I’d think Gregorio Petit gets optioned. He’s been stuck on the bench. Jack Hannahan has delivered a couple of big hits each of the last two games, so it might be tough to send him down right now. And with the A’s starting pitchers not going deep, I’d think they’d want to keep a 12-man pitching staff. We should get the answer early tomorrow …
Sean Gallagher makes his first start of the season, in place of Brett Anderson. With the game not on TV, I’ll try to provide a couple in-game updates …