OAKLAND -- The A's aren't used to having one of their own booed at home, and when it happened to Jim Johnson, they didn't much care for it.
"You can't let it get to you," Josh Donaldson told this newspaper. "No one likes to hear it."
The third baseman expanded on that with mlb.com, saying his opinion on A's fans had been altered.
"I think it got out hand early, and now it's just almost like the cool thing to do," Donaldson went on. "I don't know. It's tough. It makes everyone feel awkward. I don't know how it helps anything.
"I get that these guys paid for their seats. I don't care what they do. At the same time, I know it makes me think different of our fans. There was a time when we were all kind of one, which made it so special. We fed off them, they fed off us. Now what?"
Johnson, pitching in the seventh inning Thursday with the A's down by one run, gave up two singles and a two-run double in a 5-4 loss to Detroit. After earning 50 saves in each of the last two seasons with the Orioles, he has allowed nine earned runs in his last 81/3 innings, a 9.72 ERA. For the year he is 3-2 with a 6.55 ERA and just two saves.
Fellow reliever Sean Doolittle also chimed in on the subject. MLB.com tweeted Doolittle as saying, "You have every right to boo over lack of hustle, lack of effort, preparation, stuff like that. None of that's going on here."
A major league scout who asked not to be named, told this newspaper on Friday that Johnson "still has good stuff."
"But he'll go out there and throw a curve that drops a foot, and then he throw another and it hangs," the scout said. "And he's hanging his sinker too much. But the velocity and stuff still seems to be there."
Manager Bob Melvin, asked about what he was going to do with Johnson, said he won't have him pitching with a lead. But the manager's goal is to get Johnson back on his game.
"We're trying to get him through a tough period. The ability is there. The track record is there," Melvin said.
Staff writer Nicholas Lozito contributed to this story.