It was a heckuva lot more humid in St. Petersburg today than Thursday, not that it matters in climate-controlled Tropicana Field, where the A’s and Rays play game 2 of this three-game series. The lineups …
A’s — Crisp CF, Drew SS, Cespedes LF, Carter 1B, Gomes DH, Donaldson 3B, Norris C, Moss RF, Rosales 2B; Parker RHP.
TB — Jennings LF, Upton CF, Joyce RF, Longoria DH, Zobrist SS, Keppinger 3B, Pena 1B, Roberts 2B, Molina C; Moore LHP.
You notice there’s no Josh Reddick in the Oakland lineup. As I blogged last night, the guy has really been struggling at the plate of late, going 14 for 94 with 31 strikeouts in his last 23 games. Reddick has been so good for much of this season that it’s easy to forget this is his first full season in the majors. He’s gone from being a part-time major leaguer to an everyday No. 3 hitter in the span of one season, and that’s a lot to heap on a guy’s shoulders. It will be interesting to see if Bob Melvin considers moving him from the third spot to take some of the pressure off him, but there’s no indication of that at this point. “You know what? He’s been as consistent as anybody we’ve had, if not more so than anybody,” Melvin said. “That’s whay it stands out when go through sttretch where you struggle some. Not like anyone we have here, he’ll continue to be a force for us, continue to be a mainstay.”
–Melvin said the promotion of reliever Jim Miller from Triple-A gives him more flexibility with left-hander Travis Blackley. Translation: Blackley is very much a candidate to start Wednesday at Cleveland in Bartolo Colon’s spot. Melvin said Blackley is under consideration, but that no decision had been made. But with Dan Straily unavailable and A.J. Griffin still on the D.L., you’d be wise to put your money on Blackley.
–Melvin also shed a little more light on the decision to shift Tyson Ross to the bullpen. “This is something we’ve been thinking about for a while with Tyson,” he said. “It seems like the second or third time through the lineup is where he gets himself in a little bit of trouble. And for a guy that has such an explosive fastball, and minimal secondary pitches at times, even though last night he showed a ‘plus’ in all three of them, maybe it’s the right thing to do to let him go out there and air it out for a shorter period of time.”
That’s all for now …