Programming note: Angels-A’s coverage starts tonight at 5:30 p.m. with A’s Pregame Live on Comcast SportsNet California
OAKLAND – With Jed Lowrie sidelined by a fractured finger, Andy Parrino has become an unexpectedly important player for the A’s this weekend.
The switch hitter is starting at shortstop for the second day in a row Saturday against Angels left-hander C.J. Wilson, and Parrino figures to continue getting time at short against lefties until Lowrie returns from a hairline fracture in his right index finger.
Parrino played a big role in Friday’s 5-3 victory over Los Angeles, hitting a double and sacrifice fly and turning an unassisted double play to end a fifth-inning rally where the Angels had two runners in scoring position against Sonny Gray.
It’s a nice opportunity for a 28-year-old with just 103 games of big league experience spread over four seasons.
“I think for me, (the key is) just getting repetition up here and trying to be more consistent,” Parrino said. “Right now, with where the team’s at and the race we’re in, I’m just trying to help them win games any way possible.”
Parrino, who came up through the Padres system, has had brief stints with the A’s previously this season and last. He’s likely to split shortstop with Eric Sogard until Lowrie returns. Lowrie is taking ground balls and taking one-handed swings, but he’s still unable to throw.
“A game like (Friday’s) can go a long way for him,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said of Parrino. “He made some nice plays in the field, a double in the gap, big sac fly. For a guy that doesn’t have a whole lot of big league time, especially this time of the year, that can really be a big confidence boost for him.”
In other news, an MRI showed that first baseman Kyle Blanks has left Achilles tendinitis. His timetable for return remains unknown.