OAKLAND -- Andy LaRoche was in the starting lineup at third base and regular starter Kevin Kouzmanoff was on the bench on Friday night for the second straight game.
A's manager Bob Geren said he might give the hot-hitting LaRoche an extended look at third base. Does he have a chance to win the starting job?
"Hey, we're trying to win games, and if a guy is contributing and helping us, I'll find a way to keep him in there, yeah," Geren said before Friday night's game against Detroit. "That's the same with anybody -- not just him, but in general. We're not swinging the bats all that well. So if somebody's swinging it, I've got to get him in there."
LaRoche is hitting .333 to Kouzmanoff's .171. Kouzmanoff has also committed four errors to just one for LaRoche, who was a non-roster invitee to Spring Training and made the Opening Day roster.
Geren said he expects Kouzmanoff to work his way out of his slumps at the plate and in the field.
"I even told him, 'Guys have ups and downs fielding, they have ups and downs hitting,'" Geren said. "Right now, he's having a rough time with both of them. But I have confidence he will break out both offensively and defensively, because he's done it in the past."
Gonzalez visits local school
OAKLAND -- One day after pitching six shutout innings against the Tigers, A's left-hander Gio Gonzalez did some work in the community on Friday afternoon.
Gonzalez, along with team mascot Stomper, visited Manzanita SEED Elementary School in Oakland. Manzanita was one of two California public schools named a 2010 National Title I Distinguished School by the National Title I Association.
Gonzalez took part in an assembly at the English/Spanish immersion school. Students answered trivia questions -- those with correct answers received an A's hat that Gonzalez autographed -- and math questions. He also did a Q & A with the students at the assembly, which was a reward for their achievements.
A's flagship station adopts all-sports format
OAKLAND -- The A's flagship radio station switched from a country music format to all sports, all the time on Friday.
Entercom Communications launched what it called the largest market FM sports station in the nation, SportsRadio 95.7.
"With eight professional sports teams, several outstanding college teams and some of the best fans in America, we believe that the Bay Area deserves a great FM-sports-talk station," Entercom market manager and vice president Dwight Walker said in a release.
"SportsRadio 95.7 will deliver live and local programming, exciting play-by-play sports, and the most entertaining and informative sports-radio experience for Bay Area fans. There is a lot to talk about, and a lot of people who want to talk sports."
Entercom owns several other sports-talk radio stations, including WEEI in Boston. It will compete for listeners with KNBR, which operates two all-sports AM stations in the Bay Area.
"Numerous cities in America, including Detroit and Philadelphia, have been able to support two successful sports stations, and San Francisco will do it as well," Walker said. "Launching SportsRadio 95.7 FM will provide this market with an outstanding alternative."
The station is already a broadcasting partner with the San Jose Sharks.
Harden has a setback in recovery
OAKLAND -- Right-hander Rich Harden's time on the disabled list apparently won't end any time soon.
"The latest is I'll take a few days off from throwing," said Harden, who was examined by a doctor in the Bay Area earlier this week. "I guess you could call it a setback. We'll kind of go day to day."
Harden opened the season on the 15-day disabled list with what the A's are calling a right shoulder injury. But he stressed that the injury is to the teres major muscle, and has nothing to do with his "rotator cuff or labrum."
Harden said rest and rehab should solve this problem, and he admitted that he probably pushed too hard to get back.
"I was close before, feeling good, and kind of hit a point where I kind of got set back a little bit," Harden said. "It basically just needs a little more time. It's frustrating. You want to be out there. Really, it's just a little more time -- then building back up. It wasn't quite ready to get to that point of high-intensity work.
"I maybe just pushed it a little too much. ... It's hard not to. That's always been a problem for any athlete. That's just what you do. It's human nature. You want to be out there. Yeah, I may have done that. Ended up probably making this whole thing take a lot longer than it would have originally."
Eric Gilmore is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.