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A's add to pitching staff with callups

A's add to pitching staff with callups

OAKLAND -- As expected, the first wave of September callups for the A's featured pitching, pitching and more pitching.

In conjunction with the expansion of rosters throughout the Majors on Tuesday, Oakland summoned left-handers Jerry Blevins, Dana Eveland and Brad Kilby from Triple-A Sacramento before the second game of a three-game series against the visiting Royals.

"It's nice to be back," said Eveland, who was a member of the A's starting rotation for much of last season but has spent all of seven games with Sacramento this year. "I kind of had a feeling it was coming, but the feeling's the same. It's always good to be in the big leagues."

Eveland, who has been up with the big club twice before this year and posted a 1-3 record with an 8.00 ERA while making six starts and appearing out of the bullpen once, was 8-6 with a 4.94 ERA and .273 opponents' batting average in 21 starts with the River Cats.

He went 0-4 with a 7.88 ERA over his final five starts for Sacramento, but Eveland, 25, suggested the numbers aren't reflective of how he's felt on the mound.

"I've actually been throwing pretty well," he said, noting that he's added a cut fastball to his arsenal. "The results aren't what I've wanted, but I've had some tough luck. Hopefully I can turn that around up here."

Having moved long reliever Edgar Gonzalez into what's now a six-man rotation, A's manager Bob Geren said Eveland will work out of the bullpen for the time being. If Gonzalez struggles, Eveland might get a start or two.

"He'll probably go into Edgar's slot for now," Geren said of Eveland.

Blevins, who was on Oakland's Opening Day roster, joins the A's for the third time this year, having compiled a 12.46 ERA in five relief appearances over his first two stints. He has a 5-3 record with two saves and a 3.84 ERA in 45 relief appearances with Sacramento, striking out 62 batters in 63 1/3 innings.

"I've been feeling great," said Blevins, who also is throwing a cutter and recently ironed out some mechanical issues that brought his fastball velocity back into the low- to mid-90s neighborhood, in which he lived while posting a 3.11 ERA in 36 appearances with the A's last season.

Kilby, 26, is looking to make his Major League debut after five seasons in the Minors. He was 4-2 with two saves, a 2.13 ERA and .179 opponents' batting average in 45 relief appearances with Sacramento this year, striking out 77 in 63 1/3 innings. A 29th-round pick in the 2005 First-Year Player Draft out of San Jose State University, Kilby, a Northern California (Elk Grove) native, has 339 strikeouts in 295 2/3 career Minor League innings, an average of 10.3 per nine innings. 

"He's definitely thrilled to be here," Geren said. "He threw [Monday] night, but I'd like to get him in there as soon as possible."

Geren said the additional relievers won't have much of an impact on the respective workloads of bullpen mainstays such as Craig Breslow, Brad Ziegler, Michael Wuertz and Andrew Bailey, but lesser lights such as Santiago Casilla might get less work from here on out.

Mychael Urban is a national writer for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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