There’s a new bat in the A’s lineup tonight. Jeremy Hermida was called up from Triple-A Sacramento and he’s starting in right field. I’m curious to see what this guy can do. Hermida is just 26 and he was a 2002 first-round pick of the Florida Marlins. This team obviously could use some outfield pop, and if he shows anything at the plate I could see the left-handed hitting Hermida staying in the lineup, either in left field or right field.
He spent five seasons with the Marlins — his best year came in 2007, when he hit .296 with 18 homers with 63 RBIs — then was traded to Boston this past offseason. Hermida hit .203 with five homers and 27 RBIs in 52 games and missed time with a fractured rib. Boston released him Aug. 31 and the A’s signed him.
–Aside from Hermida’s addition, it’s a different looking A’s outfield. Coco Crisp gets a day off (Geren says Crisp is battling a sore left knee but that it’s nothing serious). So Rajai Davis is leading off and playing center. With Kevin Kouzmanoff still out, Steve Tolleson plays third and Jeff Larish is in left.
–With Thursday’s off-day, Geren said the A’s will skip the rotation spot left vacant by Vin Mazzaro. That sets up Trevor Cahill, Brett Anderson and Dallas Braden to pitch in this weekend’s series against Boston. Cahill will get an extra day’s rest, but Anderson and Braden will pitch on regular rest. Mazzaro’s turn will come up either Monday or Tuesday in Kansas City — Geren said it depends on whether he wants to give Gio Gonzalez an extra day off. And the manager confirmed Boof Bonser is still a candidate to fill Mazzaro’s spot. Clayton Mortensen, who starts Sacramento’s playoff opener against Tacoma on Wednesday — could also conveniently slide into that slot without having his schedule thrown off. I keep mentioning Mortensen as a candidate because he’s had a good season and the A’s are familiar with what he can do at the big league level.
– Are you getting your hopes up yet, A’s fans? Oakland is 7 games out with 25 to play. That’s a difficult hill to climb, but it’s all about being within reasonable striking distance when the Rangers visit for a four-game series Sept. 23-26.
A’s — Davis CF, Barton 1B, Suzuki C, Cust DH, Ellis 2B, Larish LF, Hermida RF, Tolleson 3B, Pennington SS; Braden LHP.
Mariners — Ichiro RF, Figgins 2B, Branyan DH, Gutierrez CF, Lopez 3B, Kotchman 1B, Moore C, Tuiasosopo LF, Wilson SS; Fister RHP.