Seven right-handed hitters found their way into the A’s lineup tonight against Yankees left-hander CC Sabathia. That includes Rajai Davis, who starts in left field and hits ninth. This will only be Davis’ third start in the past 10 games, as he’s lost time following Coco Crisp’s return from the disabled list and the trade for Conor Jackson.
Davis hasn’t hit the cover off the ball when he’s been in there — he’s 1-for-28 over his last 10 games — but I still think it’s important to get him in there a little more often. His speed is a good asset at the bottom of the lineup, particularly if a hot-hitting Cliff Pennington hits in front of him in the eighth spot, and Crisp follows him at leadoff. That’s a nice speed combo to turn the lineup over. Will Davis see more playing time with Jackson on the DL? “We’ll go day to day,” A’s manager Bob Geren said. “I’ve been mixing them up. (Gabe) Gross has been playing too. We’ll (platoon) left-right. We face another lefty (Saturday). Coco is back in there, and Ryan (Sweeney) is going to play pretty much every day.”
Sweeney is not in tonight’s lineup, however, as Matt Carson gets the start in right field. Pennington is off too, with Adam Rosales playing shortstop.
–Brett Anderson (left elbow) came out of Sunday’s 21-pitch simulated game well, so he’s on track to make a minor league start Friday for the A’s Phoenix-based rookie league team, according to Geren. If he progresses as planned, Anderson will pitch every fifth day to build up his pitch count. Geren said he’s hopeful the lefty returns to Oakland’s rotation between the All-Star break and the end of the month.
Here’s tonight’s lineups:
A’s — Crisp CF, Barton 1B, Suzuki C, Kouzmanoff 3B, Ellis 2B, Cust DH, Rosales SS, Carson RF, Davis LF; Cahill RHP.
Yanks — Gardner LF, Jeter SS, Teixeira 1B, Rodriguez 3B, Cano 2B, Swisher DH, Posada C, Granderson CF, Curtis RF; Sabathia LHP.