By John Hickey
Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013 at 11:20 pm in 2013 regular season.
Jed Lowrie would be happy to be in the A’s lineup playing anywhere.
To be the shortstop, though, that’s what he longs for. And with Hiro Nakajima on the disabled list, Lowrie has a chance to prove his worth. On Wednesday night, he did just that.
Batting second in the lineup, the shortstop doubled twice, hit his first home run of the season and drew a walk. He was a big reason why the Oakland losing streak to Seattle ended at two, the A’s handing the Mariners a 6-2 trouncing.
After the win, Lowrie took a long soak in the tub, the better to be ready for the series finale Thursday at12:35 p.m.
“The first two games I think we were trying the win the game all by ourselves,’’ Lowrie said. “But after a game like this, I think we’ll get in our rhythm.’’
If things had worked out differently, perhaps Nakajima would have been the starting shortstop and Lowrie would have been the starting second baseman, or worse, the extra infielder backing up at second, third and short.
But Nakajima had a terrible offensive spring, then came up with a hamstring injury that took him out of the equation. It’s a long season, but there’s at least a chance that by getting off to a great start now, Lowrie could firm up shortstop for himself.
“That’s where I feel I’m at my best,’’ Lowrie said. He was the starting shortstop in Houston last year before injury cut him down. The Astros then sent him to the A’s in the Chris Carter deal. “I believe I’m an everyday shortstop, just one who can play other positions.
“I’m going to work hard to stay here.’’
That could spell a long road back to prominence with the A’s for Nakajima, who may or may not head out with the club when the team heads to Houston after the series finale. Nakajima said he couldn’t say what the plans were, and manager Bob Melvin didn’t address the issue, although will obviously become clear in the next dozen hours or so.
Meanwhile, it’s a good bet that Lowrie will be the starting shortstop Thursday and will return to Houston this weekend in the same role.