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Slump looks like part of past for A's Grieve

Although a number of Devil Rays rookies are performing well, the Athletics have the American League favorite for Rookie of the Year.

Rightfielder Ben Grieve is considered one of the best prospects in the game and has the line drives to prove it.

Although he fell into a 2-for-25 slump, he broke out with four straight multiple-hit games last week.

"When you're going through a slump, everyone tells you what to do," Grieve said. "(But) you've got to get yourself out of it."

Including his September call-up, Grieve has hit .298 with 35 RBI in his first 179 big-league at-bats.

IN PAIN: The unpredictable A's surprised some when they activated closer Mike Fetters after a morning workout.

Fetters, who strained his left calf April 5, had a setback Friday when he couldn't finish his scheduled drills. But he felt better Saturday and tried again Sunday morning.

"My leg's not 100 percent," Fetters said after pitching a scoreless ninth during a 12-4 rout of Baltimore. "I still can't sprint. But I think I could beat someone to the (first-base) bag."

WHO'S HOT: He has been brutal at home this season (.163) but Rickey Henderson gets hot when the Athletics hit the road. He went 6-for-13 with five RBI and three runs scored in the weekend series against Baltimore.

WHO'S NOT: Signed late in spring training, former NL MVP Kevin Mitchell is off to a slow start. Although he has a pair of pinch-hits, he is 4-for-25 (.160) as a starting designated hitter.

_ JOHN ROMANO, TIMES WIRES

BY THE NUMBERS

0

Victories for tonight's starter, Mike Oquist, despite having a 2.84 ERA in four starts.

2

Complete games by Oakland pitchers through 22 games. They had 2 out 162 games last season.

.338

Dave Magadan's career average as a pinch-hitter in 207 at-bats.

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