Jason Giambi was supposed to provide some power and patience in his return to Oakland, but like many of the A's recent moves things didn't go quite as planned. Giambi hit .193/.332/.364 through 83 games while costing the team even further with his horrible glove at first base, and was mercifully placed on the disabled list Monday with a strained right quadriceps muscle.
Giambi is on a one-year deal with a team option for 2010, so with Oakland out of the playoff picture there's no reason to rush the 38-year-old back. Daric Barton is taking his roster spot and will get another shot to show that he's capable of being an impact hitter. Barton is amazingly still only 23 years old, but so far he's hit just .239/.338/.383 over 170 games in the majors and slugged .432 at Triple-A.
While the A's pay $5.3 million for 328 plate appearances of a .697 OPS, here are some other notes from around baseball …
* Starting for the first time since June of 2007, Jason Schmidt allowed three runs in the first inning Monday before recovering to throw four scoreless frames. Five innings of three-run ball is certainly a nice first start for Schmidt, but his final line wasn't pretty with two strikeouts versus three walks and his fastball was clocked in the mid-80s for most of the night.
* Chien-Ming Wang's chances of pitching again this season took a hit Monday as he experienced biceps soreness during a routine game of catch. "It's not exactly the news that I wanted," manager Joe Girardi said. "We were hoping two weeks' of rest would be enough for him to get on a throwing program. Does it mean he won't pitch this year? No, I'm not saying that."
* Scott Olsen might be facing shoulder surgery after an MRI exam revealed what interim manager Jim Riggled called "labrum issues." Labrum injuries are typically far more difficult to recover from than elbow injuries, or as Riggleman put it: "Any time you hear that word, we figure that's going to be a while." Olsen is probably at minimum finished for the season with a 2-5 record and 6.03 ERA in 11 starts.
* Frank Francisco landed on the disabled list Monday for the third time this year, but the good news is that his arm is fine. Instead he has what the Rangers called a mild case of pneumonia and because Francisco hasn't pitched in a game since July 10 he's eligible to return as soon as Sunday. C.J. Wilson will once again get ninth-inning duties in the meantime.
AL Quick Hits: Out since May with a torn tendon in his foot, Carlos Quentin came off the disabled list Monday and went 1-for-4 while batting sixth … Nelson Cruz sat out his second straight game Monday with a fractured ring finger, but hopes to avoid the DL … After struggling in 14 games atop the lineup, J.D. Drew slid to the sixth spot Monday while Jacoby Ellsbury led off … David Hernandez rejoined the rotation Monday with six innings of one-run ball against the Yankees … Chris Ray (biceps) is slated to begin a rehab stint Friday at Double-A … Freddy Garcia threw a bullpen session Monday in front of Ozzie Guillen and pitching coach Don Cooper, and will head to the minors … Mike Scioscia said Sunday that Vladimir Guerrero (knee) will be limited to designated hitter duties when he comes off the DL … Gio Gonzalez was rocked for 11 runs in 2.2 innings Monday against a Joe Mauer-less Twins lineup, including seven RBIs from Justin Morneau.
NL Quick Hits: Mat Gamel was demoted back to the minors Monday following the Brewers' trade for Felipe Lopez … Livan Hernandez likely saved his rotation spot with seven innings of two-run ball Monday … Edinson Volquez (elbow) reported no problems following a bullpen session Monday and is due to throw twice more this week … Jeff Francoeur went 3-for-4 with a homer Monday and is now hitting .345 in seven games with the Mets … Pedro Martinez is set to throw a simulated game Tuesday before beginning a minor-league rehab assignment … Jonathan Sanchez followed his no-hitter with three runs in six innings Monday … General manager Omar Minaya and manager Jerry Manuel have been told that their jobs are safe in New York … Ted Lilly had been pitching well, but was rocked for nine runs in four innings Monday … Fernando Nieve is expected to miss at least six weeks with a torn thigh muscle suffered Sunday.