With an injury disrupting the San Francisco Giants ' rotation, they'll have to rely on a rookie left-hander in his first big league start.
San Francisco hopes starter Mike Kickham can help it rebound Tuesday night after a 4-1 loss in Oakland on Monday.
Ryan Vogelsong was set up to be Tuesday's starter, but a fractured right hand forced him to the disabled list last week, changing plans for the Giants (28-23). Now they'll start the 24-year-old Kickham, who will be recalled from Triple-A Fresno prior to the game.
"He's been throwing the ball as well as anybody down there - better, really," manager Bruce Bochy told the team's official website. "He's a young kid that just settled in at Triple-A. We need some help here."
One of the organization's top young arms, Kickham posted a 3-4 record and 4.33 ERA over 10 starts in Triple-A with 54 strikeouts in as many innings. He had really begun to settle in lately, going 3-1 with a 1.72 ERA over his last five starts for the Grizzlies.
"His stuff is good," San Francisco catcher Guillermo Quiroz , who caught Kickham during spring training, told the team's official website. "He was working on a changeup in spring and has a good fastball and slider."
Donaldson's penchant for hitting left-handers continued Monday as he connected for his eighth home run of the season off of Madison Bumgarner . Donaldson is 23 for 58 (.397) against lefties this year with an OPS of 1.220.
Manager Bob Melvin told the team's official website he thinks Donaldson, batting a team-best .324 with 33 RBIs, is deserving of an All-Star selection. He would be the first Oakland position player since catcher Ramon Hernandez was an All-Star in 2003. Eleven Athletics pitchers have been named All-Stars since 2004.
Five of Donaldson's homers have come in the last 17 games as he's slugging .726 during that stretch.
"He continues to swing the bat well, and his confidence continues to grow," Melvin said.
Oakland (29-23) will send Jarrod Parker (2-6, 5.76) to the mound. Though the right-hander has disappointed after a strong rookie season, he showed good resolve his last time out. After spotting Texas three runs on two homers in the first inning Wednesday, he retired 11 of the next 12 batters he faced. He allowed no more runs while giving up six hits over seven innings, but wasn't able to avoid his sixth loss.
"He threw a couple of early-count heaters that they squared up," Melvin said. "In the past, early in the season, that game gets away from him. It looks like he's more comfortable now."
Parker saw mixed results in two starts versus San Francisco last season. He yielded six runs and walked four in two innings of an 8-6 loss May 18, then held the Giants to one run over six innings June 22 before leaving without a decision in a 5-4 loss.
Buster Posey , whose hitting streak ended at 10 games Monday, is 0 for 3 against Parker.
Yoenis Cespedes doubled Monday to extend his streak to nine games, during which he has seven RBIs.
|San Francisco Giants|
|May 26, 2013||Angel Pagan||Day-to-Day||Mild hamstring strain|
|May 21, 2013||Santiago Casilla||15-Day DL||Cyst on right knee|
|May 21, 2013||Ryan Vogelsong||15-Day DL||Fractured right hand - out 6-8 weeks|
|May 20, 2013||Ryan Vogelsong||Day-to-Day||Left game - Broken right hand|
|May 08, 2013||Santiago Casilla||Day-to-Day||Left game - right knee|
|May 04, 2013||Angel Pagan||Day-to-Day||Strained right hamstring|
|May 07, 2013||Josh Reddick||15-Day DL||Sprained right wrist|
|May 07, 2013||Josh Reddick||Day-to-Day||Sore right wrist|
|May 06, 2013||Jarrod Parker||Day-to-Day||Left game - strained neck|
|May 01, 2013||Brett Anderson||15-Day DL||Sprained right ankle|
|May 01, 2013||Brett Anderson||15-Day DL||Right foot stress fracture|
|April 30, 2013||Chris Young||15-Day DL||Strained left quad|
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- The Oakland Athletics began the month of May in quite a funk. Now, they are right back on track thanks to solid starting pitching and timely hitting.
The defending World Series champion San Francisco Giants , meanwhile, are searching to find their top form as June nears.
Derek Norris hit a two-run homer in the second, Jarrod Parker pitched seven strong innings and the Athletics beat the Giants 6-3 on Tuesday night for their fifth straight victory.
"We're doing a lot of things right," Norris said. "We're keeping it simple."
Adam Rosales homered in the eighth for the A's to snap an 0-for-24 stretch since he connected against Kansas City on May 17.
The A's are on a roll in this interleague Bay Bridge Series between the two reigning West division winners as it shifts to San Francisco for two starting Wednesday night.
"To be winning the fashion we are right now and really with guys struggling, it means everybody feels like they're part of it and contributing," manager Bob Melvin said.
Nate Freiman hit an RBI single and Jed Lowrie and Seth Smith each drew bases-loaded walks as Oakland (30-23) won for the 10th time in 11 games to move seven games above .500 for the first time since April 19.
Hunter Pence homered in the ninth and hit an RBI single in the first to give Mike Kickham a lead before he took the mound for his major league debut.
Parker (3-6) quickly settled into a nice groove. He reached seven innings for the third straight start, earning his second victory over the last five starts after consecutive winless outings.
"His stuff's always been there. It's a matter of going out there and doing it," Melvin said.
The 24-year-old Kickham (0-1) worked a clean first inning on nine pitches, hitting 92 mph on his first pitch. He reached 94 several times, too.
But the A's made contact.
Norris connected in the second for his second home run. Yoenis Cespedes hit a one-out double in the third for the first 10-game hitting streak of his career. That sparked a mound visit by Giants pitching coach Dave Righetti with a runner also on third. Josh Donaldson was intentionally walked, then Lowrie drew a bases-loaded walk to make it 3-1.
"You can talk about big hits, but you can also talk about big walks," Melvin said.
Freiman followed with an RBI single to chase Kickham. He was tagged for four runs on four hits in 2 1-3 innings with three strikeouts and four walks as the Giants lost for the seventh time in their last eight road games.
"He showed good stuff early. I'm sure he was amped up and then he got behind hitters but I liked what he showed," manager Bruce Bochy said. "It's his first outing and that's always one to put behind you."
Chad Gaudin , who was in the mix to make the start Tuesday night in place of the injured Ryan Vogelsong , wound up pitching three innings. Bochy has said Gaudin is too valuable in relief to use him for a spot start.
Kickham might just be up for one more considering the Giants have three upcoming off days and don't need a fifth starter until mid-June.
He sat at a clubhouse table before the game receiving guidance from Vogelsong, who is recovering from last week's surgery on his broken pitching hand.
"Obviously, I came into it expecting a little heightened emotions but I was able to do a better job than I thought I would (keeping them in check)," Kickham said. "After that first pitch it was like any other game. But mistakes here are magnified. I don't get away with what I do in Triple-A."
Marco Scutaro singled in the first as designated hitter against his former club. He scored on Pence's single. After that, Parker retired the next nine Giants batters in order before Brandon Belt 's fourth-inning double.
Scutaro reached on a three-base error by A's right fielder Chris Young in the eighth but San Francisco failed to capitalize. Pence hit his eighth home run of the year off A's closer Grant Balfour .
The Giants missed center fielder and leadoff man Angel Pagan at the top of the lineup. He underwent an MRI on his injured left hamstring that revealed bursitis. He hasn't played since hurting himself in Saturday's game before his inside-the-park home run to win it 6-5 in the 10th inning against Colorado.
NOTES: Giants RHP Santiago Casilla underwent surgery to remove a cyst in his right leg. Bochy didn't have any details on the time table for his recovery. ... Bochy is considering giving his pitchers in a struggling rotation an extra day of rest with the off days. ... A's RF Josh Reddick was DH for Triple-A Sacramento in his rehab assignment from a sprained right wrist and will play there for a few more days. ... Oakland's pitchers were gearing up to bat when the series shifts to San Francisco for two games starting Wednesday night. ... Boston Marathon bombing survivor Aaron Hern, 12, threw out the ceremonial first pitch. He is from nearby Martinez. ... Norris hit his first career HR against the Giants last June 23. ... Kickham has been a roommate of manager Bochy's pitching son, Brett, throughout the minor leagues. ... The A's faced a lefty starter for the fourth time in five games.