Third to first

• Ventura said that pulling John Danks for pinch-hitter Casper Wells after four innings in Wednesday's 9-3 loss to the Cubs was not about being safe with the left-hander in just his second start off the disabled list.

"Yesterday it wasn't," Ventura said. "It was more [an] NL-type game and having a pinch-hitter coming up. If it wasn't an NL game, he still would have been in there."

• Ken "Hawk" Harrelson missed his second straight game Thursday because of a sore throat. Steve Stone once again handled play-by-play television duties, with Mike Huff providing commentary. Harrelson is expected to return to the broadcast booth for Friday night's series opener in Oakland.

• Leyson Septimo will begin his injury rehabilitation assignment Thursday night with Triple-A Charlotte. The left-handed hurler has been on the disabled list since March 22 with a left shoulder strain.

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.