"This is kind of my routine," Kazmir said. "I want to get the fastball going first."
It was going, and it was going down. Six of the outs were thanks to grounders, which was good for Alberto Callaspo, who was making his debut at first base. He wound up with five putouts, saying Kazmir made it "easy" on him.
"A lot of ground balls," Callaspo said. "It was kind of weird at first, but I'll get the feeling for it."
Kazmir seems already to have it.
"He looked great out there," third baseman Josh Donaldson said. "He pitched the way he should pitch in spring training."
Kazmir was the A's biggest cash outlay this winter. Oakland lost a veteran in 18-game winner Bartolo Colon, and they brought in Kazmir, who at 30 is a decade younger than Colon, with the hope that Kazmir's resurrection last year in Cleveland was no mirage.
In many ways, this spring will be the first chapter in the saga of whether this free-agent deal will pay off. Certainly A's manager Bob Melvin was enthused.
"Really, when he throws 92 (mph), it looks like 95," Melvin said. "He was getting real good extension with his pitches."
Kazmir was all but out of baseball three years ago after his career ground to a halt with the Angels, his fastball having deserted him and the Angels finally having had enough. He spent 2012 playing with Sugar Land in Texas in an independent league. But he signed with Cleveland, sputtering through the first half before catching fire in the second half.
His ERA after the All-Star break was 3.38 — it was 4.60 in the first half — and his strikeout rate and strikeout-to-walk ratio improved dramatically.
"This is what we saw from him the end of last year," Melvin said, adding that "he had the adrenaline" that comes with pitching with a new team for the first time.
Jesse Chavez wasn't going to have much trouble making the A's bullpen as it was. Then he went out and threw four scoreless innings Friday against Arizona, including retiring 11 hitters in succession at one point.
He's now thrown 8? innings, allowing three hits and no runs and, with getting credit for the A's 2-0 victory, he's now 3-0 this spring.
Catcher Derek Norris was scratched from the A's lineup because of back pain, and Melvin said Norris might not play today.
Daric Barton drove in one of the two runs with a bases-loaded single in the eighth inning. Barton is hitting .500.
More than that, he's being aggressive with his swings and not sitting back and waiting to be walked. "At times he'll look passive," Melvin said. "But for the last year or so he's going up there looking to hit."
Former A's starter Brett Anderson is scheduled to start today for Colorado when the A's pay a visit at Talking Stick fields.
Reliever Ryan Cook, coming back from shoulder pain, threw 90 feet on flat ground. There's no immediate schedule for his return to the mound.
A's co-owner Lew Wolff told the Silicon Valley Business Journal that the team is looking into the viability of building a temporary facility in the Bay Area as the team tries to negotiate an extension to its current two-year lease with the Coliseum. Wolff did not address the team's attempts to relocate to San Jose in the story.