"I always feel like everyone's on the verge of swinging well," Melvin said. "And I really do think it's something where we get a nice game early on, string some hits together, you can gain some momentum from that. That'll be the key for us, to relax a bit. Everyone wants to be that guy right now to get us out of the little funk we're in."
Josh Reddick, who has appeared in the three-hole with the most frequency, was bumped to the No. 5 spot, while Seth Smith got his first shot at batting third. Melvin says he is comfortable with either for the job but noted, "As far as our averages to this point, [Smith] is up there."
Smith was batting .294 through eight games heading into Sunday, all at designated hitter -- the highest mark of any A's player with at least 15 at-bats. He's also compiled four walks, tying for the team lead with Yoenis Cespedes.
"He's a professional hitter," Melvin said. "He's a guy that has pinch-hit in the past, so I don't think DH is foreign to him. At some point in time, I do need to get him in the outfield, just to keep him current. But he's as advertised -- lets the ball travel, hits it the other way, sees pitches from time to time."
Elsewhere in the lineup, Anthony Recker received his second start of the season behind the plate. Both have coincided with right-hander Graham Godfrey's starts, as the two are quite familiar with each other. Along with Kurt Suzuki, Daric Barton and Josh Donaldson were also rested on Sunday, with Kila Ka'aihue and Eric Sogard starting at the corners.