By Joe Stiglich
Wednesday, July 27th, 2011 at 7:04 pm in 2011 regular season.
The A’s optioned reliever Joey Devine to the minors today and recalled right-hander Trystan Magnuson to take his place. Obviously, they think Devine’s recent struggles weren’t just about him losing his grip on the baseball. A’s manager Bob Melvin pointed to Devine’s past three outings, when Devine allowed four earned runs and four walks combined against Detroit and the New York Yankees. “Joey was struggling with his command, and in his role, being the seventh inning guy, it’s a difficult one to struggle with your command in,” Melvin said. “… We just felt like it was best to work on things in the minor leagues and get his command back there.”
Devine unintentionally threw pitches behind hitters on Friday and Sunday against the Yankees, saying he was having trouble gripping the ball because of the extreme humidity. He didn’t appear to have much confidence in his fastball Sunday. I lost track of how many sliders he threw in a row at one point, and when a guy possesses a mid-90’s fastball, you don’t want him shying away from it.
Magnuson impressed the A’s with 3 1/3 scoreless innings against Florida on June 30, but then he had to be sent down because the A’s needed a fresh arm for the next day. He told me he’s been working on his split-fingered fastball to use as another weapon against lefties.
Here’s your lineups:
A’s: Weeks 2B, Crisp CF, Matsui DH, Willingham LF, Jackson 1B, Sweeney RF, Pennington SS, Sizemore 3B, Powell C; Cahill RHP.
Rays: Jennings CF, Damon DH, Zobrist 2B, Longoria 3B, Kotchman 1B, Joyce RF, Shoppach C, Fuld LF, Rodriguez SS; Shields RHP.