PHOENIX -- Maybe this first base thing isn't so hard after all.
Alberto Callaspo was initially leery of learning a new position, but moments after he exited his debut at first base Friday, the veteran infielder grinned and said, "That was easy today. Let's see what happens."
"I thought he was great over there," said manager Bob Melvin. "His actions are all good. I hope he had some fun out there. It looked like it."
Callaspo was kept plenty busy. Starter Scott Kazmir induced four straight groundball outs to start the game and also forced a double-play ball in the third. By day's end, Callaspo was part of five plays in as many innings.
The 30-year-old, a potential platoon partner with Brandon Moss at the position, was using Daric Barton's first baseman's glove but noted his own was on its way.
"It was good," he said. "It was kind of weird the first time."
"Yeah, it was a little odd seeing him over there," said third baseman Josh Donaldson. "But once you throw the first one over to him, it's fun.
"I play catch with him all the time, so it shouldn't be that tough for me, I guess. And for him, he's an infielder, and first base isn't that difficult. It's the easiest position on the field, so I'd expect him to have a pretty easy transition, especially since he's already played a corner before."
Kazmir works quickly, as adrenaline flows
PHOENIX -- Even though he had waited three weeks to make his Cactus League debut, Scott Kazmir didn't make it last very long.
That's because Oakland's new lefty made quick work of the D-backs, who only managed two hits off him in three innings Friday. He struck out two and walked none in an almost hurried performance, throwing 31 of his 40 pitches for strikes.
"I don't know if the pace was by design. It might've just been the adrenaline going," said Kazmir, laughing. "First inning, once the catcher caught it, I was ready to throw another one. I guess it's normal for the first day."
No matter, the A's were more than encouraged by Kazmir's debut. The $22 million lefty showcased tremendous fastball command and spotted a few changeups and curveballs along the way, keeping the cutter and slider in his back pocket for his next outing.
"Just throwing stuff off my fastball, that's kind of the feel I want first before throwing other pitches," he said. "I just wanted to keep my motions in check, nice and easy, and not overthrow. You don't want to try to do too much the first time out.
"All in all, I was pleased."
"He's one of those guys that has such good carry on his fastball, and I've said this before about guys, but 92 looks like 95 out of his hand," said manager Bob Melvin. "He gets good extension with it. Really impressive today. You know, that's what we saw at the end of last year."
Back spasms take Norris out of action for a few days
PHOENIX -- A's catcher Derek Norris was scratched from Friday's lineup against the D-backs because of back spasms.
The 25-year-old backstop was originally slated to be behind the plate for lefty Scott Kazmir's Cactus League debut, but that job went to Stephen Vogt, and Norris is expected to remain out of action through at least Saturday, according to manager Bob Melvin.
Melvin said Norris has been dealing with the issue "for a couple of days," and it's the same one that forced him to miss a handful of games last August.
Norris is 3-for-11 (.273) with one home run and four RBIs in five games this spring.