Jack Cust back in A’s lineup, playing left field; Edwar Ramirez designated for assignment; Henry Rodriguez sent down

A familiar face returned to the A’s clubhouse today, as Jack Cust was promoted from Triple-A Sacramento. He’s starting in left field tonight and hitting sixth, and manager Bob Geren said Cust would play regularly, mostly in the outfield. We can take that to mean that Eric Chavez will continue getting time at DH against right-handers. (Chavez is hitting fifth tonight against Angels righty Ervin Santana). “We were at three position players,” Geren said. “We feel like (Cust) can help us. He had a nice start down there. He’s swinging the bat well.”

The thought of Cust patrolling the outfield on a daily basis probably doesn’t fill A’s fans with confidence. But as I blogged last night, this team needs an offensive jolt. That’s the priority right now, even if the outfield defense takes a hit. I think the A’s brass still wants to give Chavez time to find his stroke at DH, so Cust’s best fit is in left.

I’ll have more on Cust in tomorrow’s notebook. But suffice it to say that this guy is very relieved to be back up here, primarily because it eases the burden on his wife, Jennifer. She’s been caring for their two young daughters in their new home in San Francisco, while Cust had to commute to and from Sacramento. “She said she felt like she had a car lifted off of her chest,” Cust said. “She’s been struggling with it.”

–The A’s designated reliever Edwar Ramirez for assignment to clear a spot for Cust on the 40-man and 25-man rosters. Reliever Henry Rodriguez was optioned to Sacramento to make room on the 25-man roster for right-hander Justin Duchscherer, who returns from the DL and starts tonight.

–Ryan Sweeney is back in right field, though he still doesn’t have his full strength back after battling a nasty stomach bug. Earlier today, he ate some toast, some rice, and a banana, but that’s about it. Doesn’t sound fun to me …

Tonight’s lineups

A’s: Pennington SS, Barton 1B, Sweeney RF, Kouzmanoff 3B, Chavez DH, Cust LF, Rosales 2B, Patterson CF, Powell C; Duchscherer RHP.

Angels: Aybar SS, Kendrick 2B, Abreu RF, Hunter CF, Morales 1B, Matsui DH, Rivera LF, Napoli C, Wood 3B; Santana RHP.

Joe Stiglich