It was one of those pregame scenes we’ve seen so often in the A’s clubhouse over the past couple of seasons — some players packing their things and heading out, while others are just showing up and getting settled in.
The A’s made six transactions on a very active Sunday morning:
–Catcher Kurt Suzuki was activated from the DL, while catcher Josh Donaldson was optioned to Triple-A Sacramento. Suzuki, who had a strained rib cage muscle, played each of the past two days for Sacramento — 7 innings Friday night and 4 innings yesterday. He’s in the A’s lineup and batting cleanup today.
–Right-hander Justin Duchscherer, as expected, went back to the DL with a left hip injury, and reliever Henry Rodriguez was recalled. Yes, Rodriguez was just optioned yesterday when Duchscherer was activated from the DL. Rodriguez was scheduled to fly out this morning, but when Duchscherer got hurt again, the A’s added Rodriguez back to the roster. Players normally have to stay in the minors at least 10 days after being optioned, but they can come back sooner if they replace an injured player. That must be pretty nice when you can get sent to the minors and never have to leave the big league clubhouse …
–Reliever Cedrick Bowers was called up from Sacramento, and fellow reliever Chad Gaudin was designated for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster for Bowers. Not too shocking to see the Gaudin move. He was hit hard the past two outings and was being used sparingly. As with Edwar Ramirez (who was designated Saturday), the A’s have 10 days to trade or release Gaudin, or send him to the minors if he clears waivers.
How about this story for Bowers? He was drafted in 1996 by Tampa Bay, but in 14 professional seasons has spent just FIVE GAMES in the majors. That came in 2008 with Colorado. He also spent time pitching in Japan and Korea. Talk about perseverance. … Manager Bob Geren said the lefty is a 1-2 inning guy out of the bullpen, and he’s available today.
Quick story on Bowers from spring training: On the first day I arrived at camp, he actually introduced himself and struck up a conversation with me. That was pretty cool … normally beat writers spend the first few days hunting players down and making sure we say hi to everybody. Bowers flipped the script on me. Impressive …
–Vin Mazzaro is a strong bet to return to the bigs and take Duchscherer’s start Thursday against Detroit. Geren said that would be Mazzaro’s day to pitch for Sacramento anyway. “That’s definitely a good option. We still haven’t decided on that,” Geren said.
Duchscherer doesn’t have a doctor’s appointment scheduled yet, but he’ll see somebody to get more clarity on his left hip. Right now the A’s are calling it left hip inflammation, but we’ll know in a few days how serious it is.
Whew … and finally, the lineups:
A’s: Pennington SS, Barton 1B, Sweeney RF, Suzuki C, Kouzmanoff 3B, Chavez DH, Cust LF, Rosales 2B, Patterson CF; Cahill RHP.
Angels: Aybar SS, Kendrick 2B, Abreu RF, Hunter CF, Morales 1B, Matsui DH, Ryan LF, Napoli C, Wood 3B; Pineiro RHP.