Coming at ya from Angels Stadium, where it’s just a bit balmier than it was in Seattle … These are the conditions that baseball was meant to be played in. It’s a beautiful night …
The A’s catch an Angels team that is 3-6 and coming off a cross-country flight after getting spanked by the New York Yankees on national television last night. Good or bad for the A’s? They could be playing this team at the right time, or perhaps they’ll encounter one angry bunch looking to take out some frustrations. Maybe the point is moot. The A’s need to find a way to score some runs in this four-game series, and they’ll have to do it, in order, against Jered Weaver, Dan Haren, Ervin Santana and C.J. Wilson – one of the toughest starting pitching foursomes in the majors.
A’s – Weeks 2B, Crisp CF, Reddick RF, Smith LF, Suzuki C, Barton 1B, Pennington SS, Ka’aihue DH, Sogard 3B; McCarthy RHP.
Angels – Aybar SS, Kendrick 2B, Pujols 1B, Morales DH, Hunter RF, Wells LF, Izturis 3B, Iannetta C, Bourjos CF; Weaver RHP.
–Yoenis Cespedes gets his first day off, with Coco Crisp returning to center field for a day. A’s manager Bob Melvin said it was just time to rest Cespedes since the other starting outfielders have gotten a day off already. But it seems the timing is right for Cespedes based on how he’s been going at the plate lately. He was 1 for 11 in the Seattle series, and maybe watching a game from the dugout will serve him well. Not that he was ready for it himself. “It feels a little weird because in Cuba it never was like that. I never had a day off,” Cespedes said through interpreter Ariel Prieto. “It’s gonna feel a little boring today.” I did see Cespedes getting some instruction in center from outfield coach Tye Waller during batting practice, and I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw him pinch-hit tonight.
–Seth Smith gets his first defensive start, so it’s worth watching how he looks in left field.