OAKLAND -- A's left fielder Yoenis Cespedes is in Sacramento, where he will begin his rehab assignment with the River Cats. He is the designated hitter and will be batting third.
Cespedes hurt his left hand when sliding awkwardly into second base on April 12, and was placed on the disabled list a day later. He is eligible to return to the A's roster on Sunday if all goes according to plan.
"He's a force in our lineup," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "Even when he's not swinging well, he still has an impact because everyone around him knows they don't have to be the guy. Just pass the baton."
Cespedes is hitting .200 with three home runs and seven RBI this season, but he is clearly one of the keys to the A's success. With him in the lineup this season, the A's are 8-2. Without him they are 5-7. Last season the A's were 82-46 when he started and 12-22 without him.
"It's like adding two hitters," A's first baseman Brandon Moss said. "Having him in there is a threat every team needs and a lot of teams don't have."
"He's a force to be reckoned with in that fourth hole and provides a lot of protection for other hitters," right fielder Josh Reddick added. "The big guy is going to drive in a lot of runs for us and hit a lot of long balls."
Rosales activated from the DL
Cespedes swapped places with infielder Adam Rosales, who rejoined the team in Oakland on Thursday. He was reinstated from the disabled after playing three games with the Stockton Ports and three with the Sacramento River Cats as he rehabbed a muscle strain in his ribs.
Since the A's just got back from a road trip, they wanted to have their trainers check out Rosales before reinstating him.
"They wanted to hear it from my mouth, that I was confident with the way I felt," Rosales said. "They took the right steps to handle it."
Rosales batted .500 (6 for 12) with two doubles and a home run for the Ports. He went 2 for 13 with two walks with the River Cats. The A's optioned infielder Andy Parrino to Sacramento to make room on the roster for Rosales.
"Andy is a nice player that was put into a little bit of an odd role," Melvin said. "He's probably a little bit better of a left-handed hitter and we put him in a role where he was pretty much exclusively hitting right-handed."
The skipper believes Parrino, a switch-hitter, will be back at some point for the team. He cited Parrino's versatility and said he probably didn't get to show what he is truly capable of doing.
Parrino hit .125 in nine games and scored one run.
Happy to be home:
The A's return home for seven games after a 1-5 road trip through Tampa Bay and Boston. After struggling on the road, the homestand couldn't come at a better time.
"We've played great here so far," Reddick said. "It's a good thing we got off to that nine-game winning streak we had. It gave us breathing room because you never want to go on a 1-5 road trip."
The A's are prepared to turn the page and get back to their winning ways. While all of the players were happy to be home, one member of the A's was particularly excited.
"I'm definitely glad to be back home," Moss said. "I welcomed a new baby in right before we left to go on that trip. I only got to hold him for a day, so coming home meant a whole lot more than ending a road trip this time."
The A's will play a four-game series against the Baltimore Orioles and a three-game set with the Angels during this homestand. If the A's are in need of some extra inspiration, on Friday and Saturday they will celebrate the 40th anniversary of their 1973 World Series Championship.