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Dandy Andy: Rays starter Andy Sonnanstine feels he is on the verge of putting things together. He hasn't done too well against the A's - 2-2, 5.25 in four starts - but has owned Jack Cust, who is 1-for-11 with four strikeouts.

Down Dana: A's starter Dana Eveland does not dig the long ball, having not allowed a homer in three starts this season (142/3 IP) and only 16 in 247 career innings. He is 1-1, 3.21 in two starts against the Rays.

Day of rest: 1B Carlos Pena and 2B Akinori Iwamura are scheduled to be off today, with Willy Aybar at first and Ben Zobrist, above, at second.

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College get-together of the day

Manager Joe Maddon met on the field pregame with a small group of San Francisco area alumni, including a former classmate, from Lafayette College, where he attended in the 1970s. "Any time somebody says they're from Hazleton or from Lafayette, I always stop what I'm doing," Maddon said.

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And another ...

There was also a cake for J.P. Howell in the clubhouse and a pregame rendition of Happy Birthday from his teammates.

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Birthday surprise of the day

LHP J.P. Howell's locker was decorated with streamers, stars and a handmade posterboard of cute and somewhat embarrassing childhood photos, and his family nickname, Bub, to mark his 26th birthday. It was all the work of his mom and sister, who made special arrangements with the A's to get into the locker room early Saturday. "They did me dirty," Howell said.

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