OAKLAND -- Rain is still coming down at the Coliseum, where the tarp has been on the infield for more than an hour. It was pouring earlier -- A's players were going in and out of the clubhouse to survey the field, parts of which in the outfield look pretty saturated. Catcher Kurt Suzuki remarked, "I've never seen rain like this in the Bay Area." One of the security guards in the clubhouse-to-dugout tunnel had taped plastic bags over his shoes and up to his knees.
That said, we're less than an hour from scheduled first pitch and there has been no announcement of a delay, although it's hard to imagine this game starting on time. ** UPDATE (12:30 p.m.): The A's just officially announced the game has been delayed. No new start time has been given yet.
The rain is supposed to subside by around 1 p.m. Remember that the A's can clinch the West today if they win and the Rangers lose in Kansas City, in a game that's supposed to start three hours after this one. If this start gets pushed back, it could eliminate some of the waiting period for the A's, if they do win today against the Twins.
"First we have to win," manager Bob Melvin said. "Then potentially we'll talk about those type of things. But until we win it's moot."
Melvin said he's anxious to get the game in and hadn't given any thought to whether the A's would hang around the Coliseum to watch the Rangers game or reconvene afterward in the event they did clinch today. Either way, with the weather and the uncertainty, it's shaping up right now to be a long afternoon.
Here's the A's lineup, for when and if this game does get played:
And the Twins lineup against A's right-hander Jarrod Parker:
* First baseman Nate Freiman is still nursing an abdominal strain. Freiman said he first started feeling it earlier on this homestand while hitting in the cage. He did take swings Friday, but hadn't swung yet this morning. Melvin said Freiman is not available today, with Daric Barton starting against another left-hander.
"These things you've got to be pretty careful with," Melvin said. "Hopefully next series, but not a piece today."
* Melvin said Yoenis Cespedes (right shoulder tendinitis) probably won't begin throwing again until the Angels series at the earliest. The A's begin that series Monday, and might just have Cespedes hold off throwing altogether until their final series in Seattle.
"We'll probably be pretty careful with that, too," Melvin said.
* One leftover note from last night -- Jemile Weeks made his big-league debut in center field in the ninth inning and handled his first chance, a line drive off the bat of Parmelee for the second out of the inning.
Weeks, of course, was the A's starting second baseman for most of last season and just started playing the outfield this summer in Triple-A as a way of making himself more versatile and trying to get back to the majors.
"He had some fun with it and wanted to get out there, and when you do get out there you want to be able to make a play," Melvin said. "So he was able to do that and looked pretty natural out there.
"I know he's played some different positions this year and has accepted it well and done really well wherever he's played. He's had a great attitude this year, he really has."
* Brandon Moss today was presented with the Athletics' Good Guy Award by the Bay Area chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Said Moss: "I would like to thank my teammates for not being as good of guys."
* It's Parker (11-7, 3.81) against Twins left-hander Pedro Hernandez (3-1, 5.26) when this game gets underway.
-- Matt Kawahara