Cust's all right in left field during rare start
CLEVELAND -- Jack Cust was as surprised as anyone that he drew a start in left field Thursday against the Cleveland Indians.
Manager Bob Geren said he wanted to stack his lineup with left-handed hitters against right-hander Justin Masterson, so he started Cust in left rather than Rajai Davis and inserted the left-handed hitting Jeff Larish at designated hitter.
Cust, the normal DH, hadn't made an outfield appearance since June 20 at St. Louis, when he played two innings in right field. And he said he was a bit shocked when Geren approached him with the idea Wednesday.
He hadn't been putting in much defensive work lately because he'd been used primarily as DH.
"I haven't played much out there," Cust said before the game. "I can't say I'll be too comfortable. We'll see."
Cust's glove work can be an adventure at times. But he made the plays on all three fly balls that came his way in the A's 3-2 loss, including a sliding catch in shallow left to end the fifth when the Indians had runners on first and second with the score tied 1-1.
"Custy's good out there," said A's catcher Kurt Suzuki, before adding with a smile: "We've got Raj too. He's not too bad."
Cust led off the top of the sixth with a walk and then Davis entered the game to run for him.
Watson had been out since Aug. 8 while recovering from a procedure to remove a kidney stone.
All indications are that the idea is a go.
It's typically the starting pitcher's call on whether to wear the white or black jerseys for home games. Gio Gonzalez, in particular, has been fond of choosing to wear black when he starts home games.
-- JOE STIGLICH