Smith slotted in two-hole against Royals

Smith slotted in two-hole against Royals

KANSAS CITY -- When outfielder Seth Smith showed up at Kauffman Stadium for the series opener with the Royals on Friday, he saw something new this season: his name listed second in the A's lineup.

Smith hit in the two-hole for the first time this year, and while he hadn't done it yet for Oakland, he did have plenty of experience in that spot. Smith entered Friday as a .271 career hitter when batting second with 10 home runs and 29 RBIs.

Smith didn't fare too well in his debut as the No. 2 hitter, going 0-for-3 with a walk and a strikeout in the A's 2-0 loss.

"I did it in Colorado, so I've done it before," Smith said. "Really, where I hit doesn't matter. If that presents a different challenge or situation, I'll attack accordingly. I've hit in all nine spots in my career."

Manager Bob Melvin said he likes Smith as a No. 2 hitter because of his ability to get on base.

"I think that's a good spot for him at times. He walks a lot. He's on base quite a bit," Melvin said. "Even though he's hitting .220 or so, he's on base over .350. You want your guys at the top of the lineup to get on base."

The last time Smith batted second before Friday? That was June 5 of last year, when Smith was with Colorado. He went 1-for-4 with three strikeouts against the Giants.