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Zobrist out of A's lineup due to bruised right heel

Melvin slots Reddick in No. 3 spot for series finale vs. Astros

HOUSTON -- After nine consecutive starts in the third spot of the A's lineup to begin the season, Ben Zobrist handed those duties over to right fielder Josh Reddick for Wednesday's series finale in Houston, as he rested a bruised right heel.

"With the off-day tomorrow, felt like we'd try to take care of it right now," said A's manager Bob Melvin. "Doesn't mean he's not available during the game, but he is a guy we're going to be careful with."

Melvin said Zobrist suffered the injury several days ago while running up against the outfield wall in Oakland. He can play through it, according to Melvin, "but at this point in time in the season we don't want it to get any worse."

Video: [email protected]: Reddick singles to extend lead in the 9th

Zobrist is 3-for-7 in this series and 10-for-35 (.286) with six RBIs overall. Reddick, who was activated from the disabled list for his season debut Sunday, went 4-for-13 in his first three games and is a career .234 hitter from the No. 3 hole.

"He's swinging the bat pretty well right now, and he's hit there before," said Melvin. "I want to kind of keep everyone else where they were and keep everyone in sync a little bit rather than move them around some."

• Rehabbing A's closer Sean Doolittle (left shoulder) threw out to 105 feet on Tuesday and "felt really good," said Melvin.

"I think, really, for the first time, he really let it go," he said. "I conversed with him briefly yesterday, and he said he felt great."

Jane Lee is a reporter for
Read More: Oakland Athletics, Ben Zobrist, Josh Reddick