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For the second straight game, first baseman Travis Lee was not in the starting lineup, a little unusual for the stellar defensive player. But Lee admitted he was benched because of a prolonged slump in which he is 9-for-62 in his past 21 games. He also is 0-for-21 on the season with runners in scoring position. Greg Norton, who has two home runs in 19 at-bats since being called up from Triple-A Durham has been the replacement. Manager Joe Maddon was gracious when asked about Lee, saying not to focus only on his offensive numbers but how many times Lee has saved the team defensively. "The bat,'' Maddon said, "will come back.''

Going from Oakland's McAfee Coliseum to Seattle's Safeco Field is like going from a VW bus to a Rolls Royce. Too bad it's so chilly here. Game time temperature was 54 degrees, and it wasn't getting any warmer as the game went on.

[Last modified: Monday, December 21, 2009 12:30am]


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