Pennington out Tuesday, questionable for Friday

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Pennington out Tuesday, questionable for Friday

Tuesday's lineup: Meeting the media in the dugout Tuesday afternoon, A's manager Bob Melvin lighted on his lineup, saying he would be trying Yoenis Cespedes around the order a bit -- notable as Cespedes hit fourth Monday and was demoted to sixth a day after he went 1-for-2 with two walks and solid at bats. Melvin also said he is expecting Josh Donaldson to develop into that "bottom of the order power guy."

Here is the A's lineup for their Tuesday night contest against the Giants at O.Co Coliseum:

1. Weeks -- 2B
2. Crisp -- LF
3. Reddick -- RF
4. Suzuki -- C
5. Smith -- DH
6. Cespedes -- CF
7. Allen -- 1B
8. Donaldson -- 3B
9. Sogard -- SS
Ross -- P

Injury-front: Cliff Pennington is not in the starting lineup after leaving Monday's game with a tight groin. Melvin said before Tuesday's game it "was a bit of a concern yesterday, but his strength is better today."

Will he play tomorrow? "Depends..." Melvin deflected. It's possible that the next time Pennington takes the field, the games will count again.

Eric Sogard, who hit a home run after coming in for Pennington Monday, will get the start at short.

Joey Devine had an MRI Monday for elbow tendinitis in his business arm, and Melvin said the team is still awaiting the results.

He was on the field with his team for warm-ups Tuesday.
Not quite a platoon: The A's have been searching for their everyday third baseman since they lost Scott Sizemore for the season in the first team workout. It looks like they've found him, with a caveat. Josh Donaldson will see the "brunt of the time" at third, Melvin said. But the manager was quick to say that they "would mix Sogi in," referring to developing Swiss army knife Eric Sogard, who will back up multiple position for the A's.

One cut to go: The A's active roster stands at 26. They have to clear one space by Wednesday. I asked Melvin if he had any indication of who might be the odd-man-out and when that news might come. He simply smiled and shook his head.

Kila Ka'aihue, who hit .222 in 15 spring games, seemed to be a likely candidate. That was until Melvin said, "it looks like both will be on the Opening Day roster," talking about Brandon Allen and Ka'aihue.

The A's can't afford to lose another first baseman after Daric Barton was placed on the disabled list Tuesday, retroactive to March 24. His right shoulder strain will make him unavailable until the A's home series against the Royals on April 9.

Returning to the "O": Asked how his team was preparing for their first scheduled nine innings at O.Co Coliseum, Melvin answered: "No one is going to have a tough time getting up for the home opener." Against the cross-town rivals no less.

Doolittle will go 'full lefty reliever,' wear glasses on mound

Doolittle will go 'full lefty reliever,' wear glasses on mound

MESA, Ariz. — After a spring training eye exam showed his vision had worsened, A’s reliever Sean Doolittle plans to start the season wearing prescription eyeglasses when he takes the mound.

“I’m going full ‘lefty reliever,’” Doolittle joked. “I had the beard, now I’m wearing glasses. Just full lefty reliever.”

Doolittle got his glasses Tuesday and wore them while pitching in a minor league game Wednesday, reporting no problems. He didn’t want to experiment with contact lenses in the dry Arizona air, though he might try contacts at some point.

The glasses he’ll wear for games are a pair of clear, rectangular-shaped Oakleys with black trim. They have rubber gripping on the sides and bridge of the nose so they won’t fall off. Doolittle showed off a second pair of glasses that he’s wearing away from the field. Those ones are rounder, a bit more scholarly looking.

He’ll debut the new eye wear in a Cactus League game Saturday, when he’s slated to pitch in a split-squad home game against Cincinnati.

Players get their vision checked when they get their physical at the start of spring training.

“I bombed the eye chart,” Doolittle admitted.

He’s got 20/25 vision in his left eye, 20/40 in the right. Doolittle said he noticed he was squinting while driving at night, and wearing glasses seems to have literally opened up a new world to him.

“Looking around now at the mountains, oh my gosh, they’re really nice,” he said with a straight face. “I can see everything in more detail. It’s like going from Standard Def to 4K.”

And the lefty notices another benefit of wearing glasses.

“It’s been great with March Madness,” Doolittle said. “I don’t have to get up and walk over to the TV to see the score.”

'Lazarito' added to A's roster for Saturday split-squad road game

'Lazarito' added to A's roster for Saturday split-squad road game

MESA, Ariz. — Highly touted outfield prospect Lazaro “Lazarito” Armenteros is on the A’s travel roster for Saturday’s split-squad road game against the Dodgers in Glendale.

Armenteros, just 17, signed last summer for a $3 million bonus during the international amateur signing period. He’s taking part in his first minor league spring training in the United States, and he’ll stay in Arizona for extended spring training before departing to play in the Dominican Summer League for a stretch.

Some of Oakland’s major league position players are nursing very minor injuries, including outfielder Khris Davis and utility man Adam Rosales, so the A’s need all the healthy bodies they can find to cover both games Saturday. Getting into a major league exhibition would be quite an experience for Armenteros, a much-hyped prospect who defected from Cuba and eventually settled in the Dominican Republic before signing with the A’s.

He’s usually just referred to by the nickname “Lazarito”, which is how he’s listed on the A’s lineup card that’s been posted in advance of Saturday’s game.

A’s manager Bob Melvin said it would be good for Armenteros to be exposed to the major league atmosphere.

“He’s quite athletic, and I know they love him over there” at minor league camp, Melvin said.

Armenteros took part in the A’s fall instructional league before heading back to the Dominican Republic over the winter. In an interview with CSN California on Sunday, Armenteros discussed how excited he was to pursue his baseball career in the U.S. He’s a big fan of the Cuban natives currently playing in the majors, including the Mets’ Yoenis Cespedes, the Astros’ Yulieski Gurriel and the Diamondbacks’ Yasmany Tomas.

He also pointed out differences between baseball in the U.S. and Cuba — in terms of structure and overall approach — that he’s noticed during the short time he’s been at spring training.

“Over there you kind of play the game because you like it and you enjoy it,” Armenteros said through interpreter Juan Dorado. “Here, it’s more like a job. There’s more preparation.”

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Davis is dealing with a right quad issue.

“We don’t think it’s that big of a concern,” Melvin said.

Davis didn’t play Thursday, and he’ll rest Friday and Saturday before Melvin hopes to get him back in the lineup Sunday.

Rosales has a bit of a shoulder issue that’s kept him out of a couple games, Melvin said. But Rosales will get at-bats Friday in a minor league game along with catcher Josh Phegley, who’s a bit short on at-bats of late.