A's drop slumping Davis from cleanup spot

July 17th, 2019

OAKLAND -- found himself in unfamiliar territory when the A’s released their starting lineup Wednesday morning.

Having established himself as the automatic cleanup hitter for Oakland over the past few years, Davis was moved down to sixth for the series finale against the Mariners. assumed the No. 4 spot.

Davis has almost solely batted fourth for the A’s for the past three seasons, with a few experimental starts in the three-hole during that time. His slot Wednesday was the lowest he has hit since 2016, the first year he arrived to the A’s via trade from the Brewers.

Davis' 149 home runs since the start of the 2016 season lead the Majors. But it has been a rough go of late for the 2018 Major League home run king.

While the A’s offense has gone on a tear, entering the day homering in a season-high 16 consecutive games with 31 over that streak, none of those belong to Davis. He has gone homerless since June 18 and entered Wednesday batting .194 over his past 18 games.

“Just a change of scenery for Khris,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said. “I was trying to think back to whether or not he’s hit anywhere but fourth for us. It’s been a while. Sometimes you struggle a little bit, and a change of scenery can help. He’ll be back in the four-spot at some time. I have no doubt. Just trying to get him a different look.”

It helps to have a guy like Canha around to fill in while Davis works to get back on track. Canha has homered 11 times against Seattle over his career, his most against any team, and has gone 6-for-14 with a home run and a triple in four games since the All-Star break.