DETROIT -- The sight of Jay Marshall trotting in from the A's bullpen had been an unfamiliar one in recent weeks.

After getting his number called regularly early in the season, the rookie had become a forgotten man of sorts among Oakland relievers.

After the Detroit Tigers opened up a 5-2 lead in the eighth inning Saturday night, Marshall entered, shook off the rust and retired Curtis Granderson on one pitch to end the inning and strand a runner on third.

Manager Bob Geren said before Saturday's game that he wants to find some spots to work in Marshall, a sidearmer who won a spot on the 25-man roster coming out of spring training after the A's took him in December's Rule 5 draft.

Considering the left-hander spent all of last season pitching in Single-A for the Chicago White Sox, perhaps it's not too surprising he's doing more watching than pitching.

The lefty has made 42 appearances on the season, but Saturday was just his fifth appearance in the A's 29 games since the All-Star break. Marshall's previous outing came July 27 at Seattle.

"I'm trying to get him in there a little more," Geren said. "It just seems like the situations haven't been right lately."

Marshall had increasingly struggled when he was still getting regular work, and the A's have been working with him to develop his slider as an effective pitch against left-handers. He carries a 5.57 ERA and has allowed at least one run in five of his past 13 appearances.


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But with the A's postseason chances looking ever so slim, now might be the time to start getting Marshall, 24, some looks as the team ponders its bullpen for 2008. Since Joe Kennedy was claimed off waivers by Arizona on Aug. 4, the only other lefty currently in the A's 'pen is Alan Embree. There's also Marshall's status as a Rule 5 pick. The A's have to keep him on the major league roster for the entire season or offer him back to the White Sox before they could send him to the minors.

Staying put?

Several reports in recent days said A's outfielder Shannon Stewart had been claimed off waivers by the Chicago Cubs.

But Stewart remains in an Oakland uniform, likely meaning the teams could not negotiate a trade if Chicago did claim him. When a player gets claimed off waivers, his team can work a trade with the claiming team, simply give him and his salary over to that team, or pull him back off waivers and keep him.

Stewart, on a one-year contract, holds value to the A's because he could net them a high draft pick as compensation if he leaves via free agency after the season. The Cubs also appear to be targeting White Sox outfielder Scott Podsednik in a potential trade.

Short hops

The A's signed veteran outfielder Jeff DaVanon and assigned him to Triple-A Sacramento. DaVanon, who was drafted by the A's in 1995 but traded as a minor leaguer, was released Aug. 4 by the Diamondbacks. ... Geren said the A's may wait a day or two before deciding when Esteban Loaiza would rejoin the rotation. The right-hander made his third rehab start for Triple-A Sacramento on Saturday night. ... Geren went with Jack Cust at DH over Mike Piazza for a second straight night against the Detroit Tigers, not surprising considering that Cust had seven RBI on Friday and the A's faced a tough right-hander Saturday in Justin Verlander. Dan Johnson also sat for a second straight game as Nick Swisher played first. ... Tigers second baseman Placido Polanco was a late scratch because of a sore thumb.

-- Joe Stiglich