A’s @ Dodgers: Pregame notes

It’s a windy morning here at Phoenix Muni and rain is in the forecast near game time. It sounds as if the A’s will still make the trek over to Glendale, though, in the event they still play. Coco Crisp is still out with a tight hamstring. Actually, he’s at the dentist this morning, but Geren said he’s “hopeful” Coco gets back in game action tomorrow. Matt Carson, who’s just getting over the bug that’s been making it’s way around A’s camp, gets the start in center today.

Geren said decisions about the Opening Day starter and fifth rotation spot will likely be announced Friday or Saturday. As I mentioned yesterday, Tyson Ross and Brandon McCarthy appear to be the likely roster choices. I thought the team might want to keep Ross out of the bullpen, but it’s hard to ignore what McCarthy’s done. He’s tallied more innings than any other pitcher this spring (20 2/3) while compiling a 3.05 ERA. He’ll get one more start here in Arizona, as will Ross, who is scheduled to go Wednesday. After getting a taste of the big leagues last year, Ross said he’d be happy in any role, whether that’s as a starter or in a long-relief bullpen role.

Geren also noted that the 35 players who are still in camp are likely all headed back to the Bay Area for the Bay Bridge exhibition series next week, though he didn’t rule out cuts. They usually take about 30 anyways, and considering guys like Adam Rosales and Rich Harden are included in that 35 number, it makes sense to bring everyone along. That group will include Wes Timmons and Andy LaRoche, who are hanging in there even though it looks like Eric Sogard — who is already on the 40-man — is the front runner in the backup utility competition. Sogard is starting at second today, and he’ll also get some time at third in the game.

Joey Devine is throwing down the street at Papago Park in a Minor League game and, if all goes well, he could return to Cactus League action sometime this week. I talked to Joey this morning and, even though camp breaks in less than a week, he’s really not pushing himself. He just wants to get back to feeling how he did in his first three outings before biceps tightness caused his mechanics to go by the wayside. At this point, it seems there’s a good chance he’ll start the season in Triple-A so that he can feel comfortable with his mechanics over an extended period of time. Remember, he hasn’t pitched in a big league game in more than two years, and his biggest concern right now isn’t to make the 25-man roster but to stay healthy. He said if that means getting some time in at the Minor League level, then so be it.

A’s lineup @ Camelback Ranch in Glendale: Pennington SS, Suzuki DH, DeJesus RF, Jackson 1B, Kouz 3B, Carter LF, Carson CF, Powell C, Sogard 2B, Anderson P

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