Counting down the minutes …

Vin Mazzaro was wandering through the clubhouse today, a couple of hours before his first big league start. I always wonder what goes through a guy’s mind leading up to his first game in the majors, particularly a pitcher. It’s gotta be maddening counting down the minutes until game time. Fellow A’s right-hander Trevor Cahill, a good buddy of Mazzaro’s, said (in a good way) that Mazzaro has a little bit of cockiness to him. That would indicate maybe he won’t be intimidated by the major league environment tonight.

I’ll say this about Mazzaro: The kid knows his classic rock. I spotted him during spring training wearing an AC/DC shirt, and he told me he was a big fan. Any 22-year-old who can appreciate AC/DC wins points with me. Come to think of it, I saw Cahill wearing an Iron Maiden shirt after a recent game. What’s next? Brett Anderson sporting some Black Sabbath merchandise???

Interesting tidbit: The A’s will have four rookies starting all four games this series — Cahill, Mazzaro, Josh Outman and Anderson. It’s the first time they’ve had rookies starting four consecutive games since June 11-14, 1996 (Willie Adams, Bobby Chouinard, Steve Wojciechowski, John Wasdin). If all goes as planned, this will be the first time the A’s have four rookies in the rotation for an extended period since 1983, when Chris Codiroli, Tim Conroy, Gorman Heimueller and Mike Warren took five turns through the rotation from Aug. 10-Sept. 18.

A quick bit of news: Reliever Kevin Cameron was optioned to Triple-A to clear a spot for Mazzaro on the 25-man roster, and reliever Dan Giese was transferred to the 60-day DL to make room on the 40-man roster.

Here are tonight’s lineups:

Cabrera SS
Kennedy 2B
Cust DH
Holliday LF
Giambi 1B
Suzuki C
Sweeney CF
Cunningham RF
Hannahan 3B

Mazzaro P

White Sox
Podsednik LF
Ramirez SS
Dye RF
Thome DH
Konerko 1B
Pierzynski C
Betemit 3B
Wise CF
Nix 2B

Colon P