Offense still a concern for A's moving forward 

click to enlarge Oakland Athletics' Yoenis Cespedes walks to the dugout during a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates in Pittsburgh Wednesday, July 10, 2013. - AP PHOTO/GENE J. PUSKAR
  • AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar
  • Oakland Athletics' Yoenis Cespedes walks to the dugout during a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates in Pittsburgh Wednesday, July 10, 2013.

After scoring 19 runs in two games Sunday and Monday, the A's reverted to their recent form the remainder of their series against Toronto, scoring a total of two runs in the games.

Oakland has been shut out three times in the past 17 games, and the team hit .222 in July, the lowest July average in Oakland history and tied with the Twins for the lowest average in the majors last month.

So despite the A's place atop the AL West standings, there are still concerns about the offense, one reason general manager Billy Beane added Alberto Callaspo the day before the deadline.

Callaspo is expected to platoon at second base with Eric Sogard and is expected to be an offensive upgrade over Adam Rosales, who was batting .193.

Yoenis Cespedes, who appeared to be pulling out of his season-long struggles at the start of the week, going 7-fo-14 with two doubles, a triple and a homer, looked dreadful Wednesday, going 0-for-5 with two strikeouts — but much of that came against R.A. Dickey, the first knuckleballer Cespedes has faced in the big leagues.

Also in a funk is outfielder Chris Young, who is batting .192. Josh Reddick, who missed Wednesday's game with a headache after a collision with Jed Lowrie on Tuesday night, is batting .182 (10-for-55) over his past 17 games.

Manager Bob Melvin always describes Coco Crisp as the player who fuels the A's lineup, and Crisp is 0-for-his-past-16 and batting .175 (25-for-143) over his past 35 games.

Oakland will look to turn it around in time for this weekend's big series against the division-rival Texas Rangers, which starts tonight with the A's Tommy Milone facing the Rangers' Alexi Ogando.

NEXT GAME

A's vs. Rangers

WHEN: Today, 7:05 p.m.

WHERE: O.co Coliseum, Oakland

TV: Comcast SportsNet California

RADIO: KGMZ (95.7 FM)

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