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A's welcome hitter-friendly change in Cincinnati

CINCINNATI -- Caught in an offensive funk, the A's are perhaps in dire need of a change of scenery following a 10-game homestand.

They got it Tuesday in Cincinnati, home to one of baseball's most hitter-friendly confines in Great American Ball Park.

The park is rather cozy, as short dimensions combined with the shortage of foul territory provide a hitters' haven on most days. A's manager Bob Melvin is hoping that proves true for at least his players during a quick two-game stay.

"Teams know before they get here how it plays," Melvin said, "that it's typically a good place to hit."

The A's endured their ninth shutout of the season on Sunday and fourth in their last 20 games, a span during which they hit just .218 with 67 runs scored, averaging out to 3.4 runs per game. That's well below their season average of 4.4, which ranked eighth in the American League entering the day.

Following Cincinnati, the A's will trek across the border to Toronto for four games at Rogers Centre, which also happens to be a likeable place to hit. Melvin thinks his team could benefit from keeping this in mind, even though there might be pressure to do too much.

"Especially since we've been struggling offensively," Melvin said. "I want them to think, 'Yeah, this is a good place to hit.'"

Jane Lee is a reporter for Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB.
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