Crosby activated from DL; Braden moved into rotation

NEW YORK -- The Oakland Athletics activated shortstop Bobby
Crosby from the disabled list Friday and moved left-hander Dallas
Braden into their rotation.

Braden, who had been pitching in relief, will replace Joe
Blanton in the rotation. Blanton was traded to the Philadelphia
Phillies on Thursday for three minor leaguers.

Blanton had been scheduled to start Friday night against the New
York Yankees in the opener of a three-game series. Left-hander Greg
Smith got the ball instead, to be followed by Sean Gallagher on
Saturday and All-Star Justin Duchscherer on Sunday.

Braden is slated to start Tuesday night at Tampa Bay, after Dana
Eveland goes Monday against the Rays.

The A's also purchased Lenny DiNardo's contract from Triple-A
Sacramento. This is DiNardo's third stint with the club this
season, and manager Bob Geren said the lefty will work out of the

DiNardo was expected to arrive at Yankee Stadium in time to be
available Friday night.

Crosby, who had been sidelined since July 3 with a strained left
hamstring, was in the starting lineup against the Yankees. He was
hitting .260 with four homers and 38 RBIs before landing on the DL
for the sixth time in his career.

"Now we know he's 100 percent," Geren said.

Braden was recalled from Sacramento last week for his fourth
stint with Oakland this season. He was 1-0 with a 4.50 ERA over
eight appearances with the A's, all in relief.

The A's also optioned infielder Gregorio Petit to Sacramento on

In other news, right fielder Ryan Sweeney was back in the lineup
from a dislocated finger, but first baseman Daric Barton sat out
with a stiff neck.

"Hopefully, he'll be fine by tomorrow," Geren said, adding
that Barton was available off the bench.

Jack Hannahan started at first base for Oakland.

Geren also said injured designated hitter Frank Thomas (right
quadriceps tendinitis) would take batting practice Friday.