TEMPE, Ariz. -- The A's suffered a bit of a scare in the first inning against the Angels when Chris Young, getting his first start in right field, had to come out of the game with a quad cramp.
Young, a center fielder who is being asked to become equally adept in left and right, had to race back on a ball hit by Angels second baseman Brendan Harris. Young made an over-the-shoulder catch with a dive, ending the inning, then had to be lifted for a pinch-hitter in the second.
After Young was sent to get a look by the medics, the initial diagnosis of a quad cramp stood. He's not going to play Monday, but he was scheduled off anyway, and should be good to go Tuesday.
"It was a nice play and a nice at-bat for him,'' manager Bob Melvin said. "He should be fine.''
Young was long gone by the time the A's closed out a 7-5 win over the Angels on a sunny but cold and windy day. The game lasted 3:44, and most of the crowd of 5,213 was elsewhere by the time this one ended. Scott Sizemore, a second baseman-turned-third-baseman-turned second baseman, and Jed Lowrie, who is being asked to play all over the place after a career at shortstop, were the Oakland double play combination Sunday.
They didn't get a double play, but both came out of the game satisfied that they are on course defensively. Sizemore made a nice diving stop in the dirt, and Lowrie was charged with an error on a nasty windblown pop fly.
"I'm back where I've played most of my career,'' Sizemore said after coming out of the game. He played third base for the A's in 2011. "We got in situations where we can work on stuff you can't work on in practice.''
Melvin said he thought Sizemore was further along that the manager thought he'd be.
"He looks real good,'' he said. "He was out there in the right place.''
Lowrie felt he should have caught the windblown pop, but didn't take it badly, all-in-all.
"I've got to know where the wind is blowing and get around the ball,'' he said. "For a first game, there were some good plays. It's a good place to start.''
Melvin described the afternoon as "a bit of a tough day'' for Lowrie because of the error, but said "he made some nice plays out there, too.'' Catcher Derek Norris took a ball off his little finger, but remained in the game. First baseman Daric Barton had singles in his first two at-bats. He has a long road to climb to earn a spot on the roster. He denied feeling any extra pressure now that he's fighting for a roster spot. "I don't do that anymore; in the past I did,'' he said. "What's happened in the past is in the past. It's liberating.'' Starter Travis Blackley wanted to pitch two innings, but because of a 30-pitch first inning, he didn't get a chance to. "The wind was blowing pretty good,'' he said. "A crosswind is the worst.'' Blackley turned in a pickoff and said "that's still there.'' But his big moment was almost being blown off the mound during his windup. "I balked and they didn't call it,'' he said. Infielder Darwin Perez came off the bench and broke a 4-all tie with a two-run double in the top of the sixth. Perez tried for a triple but was thrown out at third. 19-year-old Addison Russell gave a glimpse of his power, hitting an opposite-field double over the right fielder's head in the eighth. He came around to score on a single by another up-and-comer, 23-year-old Michael Choice. The last two pitchers to throw for the A's, Blake Hassebrock and James Simmons, got rave reviews from the manager. Melvin said both could figure on getting a chance to shine in the next week or so before Oakland starts to work its frontline pitchers into games.