Oakland Athletics News
7-28-15: The Athletics sure have been traders recently. On Monday, they sent Tyler Clippard and cash to the New York Mets in exchange for right-handed pitching prospect Casey Meisner. Last week, Oakland traded Scott Kazmir to the Houston Astros and received two prospects. The reason that the Athletics shipped off both of these productive pitchers is that they are in last place and 12 games out of first place after dropping four straight games, including Sunday’s 4-3 loss at the hands of the San Francisco Giants.
7-24-15: The Oakland Athletics learned that they would lose starting pitcher Jesse Hahn for an undisclosed amount of time last week and this week the team got a little more clarity into the injury. Hahn received a pair of opinions on his injured elbow and it was shown that there was no ligament damage which immediately eliminates the possibility of a season-ending Tommy John surgery. While that was a bit of good news for Oakland to start the week the bad news is that Hahn will be shut down completely from throwing for at least a month while dealing with the elbow injury and a bout with forearm inflammation. The Hahn injury mixed with the lackluster on the field product in Oakland now leaves the Athletics open for business when it comes to the July 31st trading deadline. Billy Beane may have some of the most attractive pieces to move at this year’s deadline including LHP Scott Kazmir, 2B/UTIL Ben Zobrist and RHP Tyler Clippard to name a few. Jesse Chavez’s job may not be secure in Oakland either after essentially breaking out over the last calendar year in Oakland while Josh Reddick has also drawn some interest from teams including the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
7-22-15: The Athletics wish they could have carried over some of their five home runs and 14 runs from Sunday to Tuesday. Oakland continued to struggled against left-handed starters, as Mark Buehrle held the Athletics to one run over seven innings. Athletics rookie Kendall Graveman gave up six runs in 5.1 innings in the 7-1 loss.
7-17-15: The Oakland Athletics sprinted into the All-Star break with the worst record in the American League despite a .450 winning percentage. With another losing season likely in Oakland all eyes will once again turn to the team’s GM Billy Beane. Beane will have plenty to work with this July 31st trading deadline including a super utility man who specializes at second base in Ben Zobrist and a potential closer or late inning relief pitcher in Tyler Clippard. Both New York teams, the Mets and the Yankees, have shown interest in Zobrist along with 10 or so other teams while plenty of teams are looking for pitching. Clippard could automatically turn a mediocre bullpen like the bullpen in Los Angeles or Toronto and immediately make them a playoff contending bullpen. One player the team won’t be able to trade off this July is pitcher Jesse Hahn as he was placed on the disabled list with a forearm strain. Hahn was acquired from the San Diego Padres this offseason and has posted a 3.35 ERA with a 6.0 K/9, 2.3 BB/9 and 52.6% ground ball rate. Hahn will be on the disabled list for quite a long time according to reports late in the week which immediately made many wonder whether the Athletics are downplaying the injury and whether Tommy John surgery will be necessary.
7-13-15: The Athletics bounced back from a difficult series against the American League East-leading New York Yankees to play their best series of July. All-star Sonny Gray looked strong in Sunday’s 2-0 victory over the Cleveland Indians in the rubber game of the series. With Gray’s complete game shutout, he lowered his AL-best ERA to 2.04.
7-8-15: On Tuesday, the Athletics recalled outfielder Jake Smolinski, who was crushing the ball in the minor leagues after Oakland claimed him off waivers from the Texas Rangers. He will start on Wednesday against CC Sabathia. Although he did not play on Tuesday at Yankee Stadium, the Athletics received home runs from Billy Butler and Brett Lawrie. Lawrie’s came in the 10th inning and gave Oakland the 4-3 lead for good.
6-30-15: The last-place Athletics have been very streaky recently, as they had a five-game winning streak stopped last Friday against the Kansas City Royals. Unfortunately, Kansas City swept Oakland. Then on Monday, the Athletics jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the first inning against the Colorado Rockies. Rookie Kendall Graveman threw seven shutout innings in the 7-1 victory.
6-16-15: The Athletics moved to just five games below .500 on the road this season with their 9-1 victory over the San Diego Padres on Monday. Each of Oakland’s eight starting position players tallied a hit in the win, as the team won its second consecutive game. Jesse Hahn threw 6.2 innings of one-run ball in the win.
6-8-15: The Athletics looked to be making strides towards getting back to .500 with a sweep of the Tigers in Detroit last week. Unfortunately, Bob Melvin’s team, which entered Fenway Park 10 games below .500, could not continue its road winning streak. The Boston Red Sox swept Oakland. On the bright side, Pat Venditte, who made his Major League Baseball debut on Friday and has thrown 2.1 scoreless innings since, is the first switch-pitcher in the majors since 1995.
6-5-15: The Oakland Athletics may trade a slew of their veteran players this July but one player that seems likely to stick around in LHP Sonny Gray. Billy Beane still wants to build a contender either next year or the year after that and Gray is expected to anchor the pitching staff for those teams according to many reports this week. The player that seems most likely to be traded at this year’s trading deadline is Ben Zobrist who could interest almost every single team in the major leagues this season. The Washington Nationals have already inquired about acquiring the super utility player from Oakland with the hopes of plugging Zobrist in at left field until Jayson Werth returns from the disabled list with his wrist fractures. When Werth returns the team would be able to plug Zobrist in all over the diamond keeping their regulars healthy while adding much needed versatility to a National League team. What the Athletics would be asking in return in a potential Zobrist trade remains to be seen but Billy Beane should have plenty of interest this July for him allowing him to skyrocket the price.
5-30-15: The Oakland Athletics finally got a bit of good news this season when the team welcomed back their closer Sean Doolittle off the disabled list. Doolittle had not pitched at all this season for the last place Athletics after hurting himself in spring training this season. Doolittle is barely cracking the 90 MPH plateau with his fastball since returning from the injury but the closer thinks he can be deceptive enough and thinks he has enough command and control to get by until the velocity comes back as time goes on. As the team got one pitcher back they lost another when Scott Kazmir left a start this week against the Detroit Tigers with a sore shoulder. Kazmir was sent immediately for an MRI as the team needs to know whether the impending free agent will be available in trades this July assuming the team continues to fall out of contention. Kazmir was possibly the best player that Billy Beane could trade this July and with the injury the Oakland GM may be forced to trade DH Billy Butler or outfielder Josh Reddick to potentially improve the team for the 2016 season.
5-26-15: The Athletics’ fielding struggles continued, as shortstop Marcus Semien collected his 17th error of the season on Monday. Oakland’s outfield defense will suffer as well because Coco Crisp was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a neck injury. However, the Athletics bounced back from a four-game losing streak to win on Saturday, Sunday and Monday for their longest winning streak of the season.
5-18-15: The Athletics’ season is quickly going south, as the Chicago White Sox swept Oakland at
the O.co Coliseum this past weekend. To add insult to injury, the Athletics placed first
baseman Ike Davis on the 15-day disabled list on Sunday with a strained left quadriceps.
On the bright side, first baseman Max Muncy hit his first career Major League Baseball home run in Sunday’s loss.
5-12-15: The Athletics’ game with the Boston Red Sox on Monday went back and forth, and it
reached the 11th inning. Unfortunately, Oakland continued to struggle offensively, as it
did not score in extra innings. Angel Castro allowed Pablo Sandoval’s go-ahead home
run in the 5-4 loss, as the Athletics lost their sixth consecutive game and dropped to 10
games below .500 on the season.
5-5-15: After hitting two home runs in the Athletics’ 7-1 victory over the Texas Rangers on Sunday, Stephen Vogt began Monday’s contest in Minnesota with a grand slam in the first inning. However, Oakland allowed the Twins to have multiple four-run innings, as the Athletics lost, 8-7, and fell to 11-16 on the season.
4-27-15: Over the weekend, Athletics fans were surprised to see their team swept by the Houston Astros for the first time in franchise history. On Saturday, Oakland placed Ben Zobrist on the disabled list with a left knee injury. The Athletics, who will miss his offense, will hope to end their four-game losing streak against the Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday.
4-21-15: The Athletics had a hectic first week of the 2015 regular season, as they scored double-digit runs twice, allowed 10 runs once and played back-to-back extra-inning games. Oakland split its four-game series with the Texas Rangers and lost two of three contests to the Seattle Mariners. Then on Monday, Brett Lawrie hit his first home run in a night that included three Athletics home runs, as they defeated the Houston Astros, 8-1.
4-7-15: On Monday at O.co Coliseum, the Athletics hosted their Opening Day game against the Texas Rangers, and the team did not disappoint. Oakland won, 8-0, behind Sonny Gray’s eight strong innings, and in seven of them, he did not allow a Texas hit. Ben Zobrist and Stephen Vogt each hit home runs in the shutout victory.
3-31-15: First baseman Mark Canha, a 26-year-old Rule 5 pick, is expected to make the Opening Day roster, especially after hitting his fourth home run of 2015 spring training on Friday. It came in walkoff fashion, as the Athletics defeated the Texas Rangers, 7-6. In other Oakland news, Josh Reddick is not expected to be ready for Opening Day due to his oblique injury.
3-25-15: In Friday’s game, Oakland’s projected starting center fielder Sam Fuld was hit in the face while running to first base. The 33-year-old did not suffer a concussion or any fractures, but he will wear a protective guard as a part of his batting helmet. He returned to baseball activities on Monday. With Josh Reddick and Alex Hassan both dealing with injuries, the Athletics currently do not have much depth in the outfield.
3-18-15: On Tuesday, Sean Doolittle said that he is getting closer to throwing as he hopes to get back to closing duties in mid-April. Earlier this week, the Athletics optioned infielder Rangel Ravelo and pitchers Chad Smith, Eury De La Rosa and Arnold Leon to Triple-A Nashville. They also optioned infielder Renato Nunez and right-hander Raul Alcantara to Double-A Midland.
3-4-15: Coco Crisp, who has pink eye, has sat out part of spring training thus far. He had the same problem in 2012 and missed a week due to it. Last week, the Athletics claimed outfielder Alex Hassan and right-handed pitcher Chad Smith off waivers. They also placed pitchers A.J. Griffin and Taylor Thompson on the 60-day disabled list.
3-3-15: Last week, the Athletics reunited with left-hander Barry Zito, as they signed him to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training. He will make $1 million if he makes the major league roster, and he could get an additional $175,000 in incentives. A few days after the signing, Athletics manager Bob Melvin said that Zito will make at least one start this spring.
2-17-15: On Wednesday, the Athletics and right-handed relief pitcher Tyler Clippard avoided arbitration with a one-year contract worth what is expected to be more than $8 million. He was the setup man for the Washington Nationals last season, but he could be closing early in 2015, as Sean Doolittle is dealing with a shoulder injury.
2-9-15: On Saturday, the arbitrator awarded in favor of the Athletics in giving $850,000 to starting pitcher Jarrod Parker. The 26-year-old righty is recovering from Tommy John surgery and is expected to miss the first few months of the 2015 season. He last appeared in a game on September 28, 2013.
2-5-15: The Oakland A’s continue to be a relevant team but have not had much success when it comes to the postseason. However, despite claims that the A’s are in rebuilding mode, GM Billy Beane signed DH Billy Butler to a three-year deal, acquired pitcher Eury De La Rosa from Arizona and traded first baseman Brandon Moss to Cleveland for infielder Joey Wendle. A’s tickets for this season at O.co Coliseum have a current average price of $95.58 on the secondary market. Tickets for their home opener vs the Rangers have a current secondary average price of $113.75, with a get-in price of $33.
10-7-14: The Oakland Athletics slipped in the second half of the season and had to settle for the second Wild Card spot in the American League and a road game in the one game playoff Wild Card round of the postseason. Oakland drew the Kansas City Royals in that one game playoff and had to contend with their ace James Shields in Kauffman Stadium. There was not a single Athletics ticket not sold for this game as the fans filed into Kansas City for what was scheduled to be a pitcher’s duel. Each team jumped out early scoring in the first inning before the starting pitching settled in and slowed down the offenses. Kansas City’s hopes and dreams looked to be going down the toilet in the 6th inning of this game as the Oakland Athletics put up five runs in the 6th including a three run home run by Brandon Moss, his second of the game, but the Royals refused to quit. Kansas City answered with three of their own in the bottom of the 8th inning and one more in the bottom of the 9th inning to tie the game and send it to extra innings. These two teams traded zeroes until the 12th inning when Oakland put another run across the board to take an 8-7 lead but the Royals responded in the bottom of the 12th inning when Salvador Perez, the Royals catcher, came up to the plate. Perez hit a single down the third base line to score Eric Hosmer and give the Royals a 9-8 victory.
Oakland went from having one of the most comfortable leads in the entire American League to backing into a playoff spot late in the season. Now the Athletics season is over and so is the career of DH Adam Dunn. Dunn announced that this was very likely his final season in the big leagues, although he did leave a very small door open for a return in 2015. It’s not back to the drawing board for the Oakland Athletics as the team focuses more on selling season tickets and less on selling playoff tickets. Many around the league are now questioning GM Billy Beane’s methods and decision making after this team went from easily the best in the American League to the team that went out in the first round of the playoffs.
10-1-14: I’d argue that it was a failure of a season the A’s. They owned the best record in baseball in the first half, but after the Midsummer Classic, Oakland was among the worst in MLB. Jon Lester and Jeff Samardzija, the team's blockbuster acquisitions, were both lights-out early on. Once the offense dried up, so did the pitching. The A’s lost to the Royals in the AL wildcard game 9-8 in 12 innings Tuesday night. They blew a 7-3 lead in the 8th inning.
9-30-14: The Oakland Athletics learned that Brandon Moss will require a major hip surgery in the offseason after tearing most of his cartilage in the hip. Moss may require a microfracture surgery as well this offseason but for now will finish out the rest of the year and the playoffs with the help of a cortisone shot in the right hip. The injury has reportedly hurt Moss for much of the season but is not being blamed for his struggles at the plate. The Athletics have fallen out of first place in the American League West and almost lost out on the playoffs all together which would have likely put manager Bob Melvin into the hot seat heading into the winter. Oakland instead will travel to Kansas City to take on the Royals on the road in the American League Wild Card Playoff game that will be played on Tuesday, September 30. Oakland finished the 2014 season with a 88-74 record and narrowly edged the Seattle Mariners in the last playoff spot race for the 2014 season.
9-25-14: Oakland rebounded nicely from their series loss to Astros last week by beating the Phillies over the weekend. They’re now tied with the Royals for the No. 1 AL wild-card spot. The A’s have done everything in its power to have a historic collapse this season. Oakland is 14-27 in their last 41 games. Their offense has fallen off drastically, and their starting rotation has not dominant. Yet, Oakland is still in solid position to reach the playoffs.
9-23-14: The Oakland Athletics are being criticized for their fall from the top of the AL West and the trade that sent Yoenis Cespedes to Boston in exchange for Jon Lester is being blamed for it all. While the loss of Cespedes may have hurt the Athletics as they continue to struggle scoring runs it was not the only place for blame as Brandon Moss, Derek Norris, and John Jaso specifically have fallen off significantly at the plate in the second half. The fall from grace of the Athletics has many around the league wondering if manager Bob Melvin will be on the hot seat this winter, especially if the team does not make the postseason. Change may be coming to the big league Athletics team after the 2014 season and it is already coming to the A’s Triple-A squad next season as well as the team announced a move from Sacramento to Nashville. While the move on paper perplexes some with the distance between the two clubs but Nashville is opening a new stadium in 2015 and may bring more revenue to the club.
9-18-14: The A’s had just dropped three out of four against the White Sox and were in danger of surrendering the top wild-card spot in the AL. Thankfully for their fans, Oakland managed to take two of three from Seattle over the weekend and will now look to finish strong. They dropped one game to Texas this week. There is no reason to think the A’s are not capable of turning things around. Their offense is still a question mark, but their pitching staff can carry them.
9-16-14: The Oakland Athletics were leading the AL West division by a healthy margin at the times of the Jon Lester, Jason Hammell, and Jeff Samardzija but in general manager Billy Beane’s attempt at an American League pennant he may have sacrificed the team’s shot for a playoff spot. Beane snatched up every pitcher he could acquire while failing to address his second base issues while sacrificing the now and the future by trading away Yoenis Cespedes and Addison Russell. The Athletics have lost their AL West lead and currently sit 10 games behind the Angels with an 83-66 record. Oakland has also lost their cushion in the American League Wild Card chase and has just a 1.5 games lead over the second wild card leading Kansas City Royals. If the Athletics cannot turn their offensive struggles around they may find themselves on the outside looking in come this October.
9-12-14: It was an awful past week for the A’s as they dropped series to the Mariners and Astros. They’re now 9-19 in their last 28 games played. They currently occupy the No. 1 AL wild-card spot with a 2.5 game cushion. Adam Dunn has provided a nice spark offensively so far, but the A's are still nowhere near where they were as a team earlier this year. Maybe trading Cespedes for Lester wasn’t a good idea after all?
9-9-14: The Oakland Athletics had to clear a roster spot this week to make room for the recently acquired and soon to be retired Adam Dunn and the team did so by designating Deck McGuire for assignment. The starting pitcher was a former Blue Jays first round pick in 2010 out of Georgia Tech and has struggled since coming to Oakland posting an 8.05 ERA in Sacramento. Dunn announced last week that he would retire after the 2014 season but seemed to back off the announcement a tad this week saying that he would “likely” retire at seasons end. Dunn was also quoted as saying that he needed to put the decision on the backburner for at least a couple months as the Oakland A’s are likely headed to the postseason in 2014. Dunn has done nothing but hit home runs and produce since the trade as he looks to fill the big shoes of Yoenis Cespedes in the lineup.
9-4-14: Oakland is no longer the best team in baseball after going 12-17 in August and watching what
was a four-game lead in the AL West turn into a 4.5 game deficit. The A's do still have a 4.5-
game lead for the first AL wildcard spot, and it will take a huge September collapse for them
to miss the playoffs altogether. They did acquire DH Adam Dunn from the White Sox over the
weekend in an effort to add some offensive punch to their lineup.
9-2-14: The Oakland Athletics have lost their grip on the American League West division in recent weeks and have fallen out of first place this week behind the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. General Manager Billy Beane is not worried and has no regrets in trading Yoenis Cespedes for Jon Lester. Beane values the three wins that Lester has brought the club over the alternative of not having the southpaw in the rotation. Oakland may have changed their stance internally after getting swept by the now first place Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim over the weekend and went from first place to five games behind the Angels in the division. Oakland had lost four in a row to end the week and now look to at least hold on to one of the Wild Card spots left in the American League. The Athletics did acquire DH Adam Dunn from the Chicago White Sox to attempt to end the skid and replace Cespedes’ production in the lineup.
8-27-14: There are still concerns about their lack of offensive firepower since they traded Yoenis Cespedes, but the A's managed 22 runs in five games last week. They split their first two games of a three game series versus Houston this week and they finish up the week with a huge four game set against the Angels. They currently occupy the top wild-card spot in the AL and are only one game back of the Angels for the AL West lead. With the Angels starting rotation problems, my bet is on Oakland to capture the division crown.
8-26-14: The Oakland Athletics have struggled a bit since trading Yoenis Cespedes and a draft pick for Jon Lester and Jonny Gomes making many fans wonder if the former Red Sox southpaw was worth the cost. The A’s were also awarded a waiver claim on Tampa Bay Rays infielder Yunel Escobar over the weekend but Escobar was ultimately pulled back off waivers and a trade is unlikely to be hammered out this season. This may be the instance that sparks an offseason trade or trade in the future though which is one of the good things about revocable waivers in August. Oakland did however acquire catcher Geovany Soto from the Texas Rangers this week to solidify their catcher position for the playoffs.
8-20-14: The A’s have finally hit a bump in the road after rolling for months. They dropped three out of four to the Royals last week before being swept by the Braves in Atlanta this past weekend. They did beat the Mets Tuesday, but they find themselves a 0.5 game back of the Angels in the AL West standings.
8-19-14: The Oakland Athletics traded for Jon Lester this trading deadline but may only keep the southpaw around for three months and lose him to free agency this winter. Lester spoke to reporters this week and reported that he would go wherever he and his family were most happy, not necessarily the highest bidder, when he tests the free agent market this winter. Oakland is at a distinct disadvantage as they only have two plus months to make an impression on Lester over the team in Boston that he has spent his entire career with.
8-13-14: Oakland’s lead in the AL West currently sits at 3.5 games over the Angels. They’re the best team in baseball all season long and are showing why. Jon Lester is 3-0 in his first three starts with the A’s since being acquired from Boston as he beat the red-hot Royals Tuesday night. The platoon of Jonny Gomes and Sam Fuld in left field has worked out just fine, and right fielder Josh Reddick has picked up the run-production.
8-12-14: The Oakland Athletics briefly flirted with the idea of signing the recently released Scott Sizemore from the New York Yankees but have ultimately decided against bringing in the righty. The Athletics may trade Jason Hammel after acquiring Jon Lester and started the month of August by placing him on revocable waivers. It seems unlikely that Oakland would want to trade away some of their depth after trading lefty Tommy Millone to the Minnesota Twins for Sam Fuld but weirder things have happened in Billy Beane’s office over the years. The Athletics continue to run away with the AL West division and sit at 72-45 and lead the division by four games over the Los Angeles Angels.
8-6-14: The biggest question mark surrounding the A’s after trading Yoenis Cespedes to Boston for Jon Lester is will they have enough offense? So far, that answer is yes. The A’s beat the Tampa Bay Rays 3-0 Tuesday night in Oakland. Jason Hammel allowed seven hits and four walks in 5 2/3 innings for the win. He entered the game with a 9.53 ERA since Oakland acquired him and Jeff Samardzija from the Chicago Cubs back on July 4. The A’s currently have a two game lead on the Angels in AL West play.
8-5-14: The Oakland Athletics made some of the biggest splashes at this year’s trading deadline. The trade that brought in both Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel are well documented but the A’s added another starting pitcher in Jon Lester before the deadline ended. Along with Lester outfielder Jonny Gomes and a competitive balance pick came to Oakland in exchange for Yoenis Cespedes and cash. The Athletics now have the best starting rotation in all of baseball and have a ton of depth with Jesse Chavez, Drew Pomeranz, and they had Tommy Milone. They had Milone but traded him to the Minnesota Twins for outfielder Sam Fuld in a deal that had many Oakland fans scratching their heads.
7-30-14: The Oakland Athletics are close to finally finalizing a 10 year deal with the Oakland County Coliseum to call that their home for the next decade. The A’s could still decide to move as early as December 2017 but would be on the hook for the entire $20 million lease as the team is still undecided on whether they will build their own ballpark or continue to share a football stadium with the Oakland Raiders. The A’s will keep that partnership going but ended the partnership with relief pitcher Jim Johnson this week when they designated the former closer for assignment. Johnson was acquired from the Baltimore Orioles this offseason and has struggled from day one in Oakland.
7-28-14: The Athletics have won both of their series since the All-Star break, and they will have to continue to win the bulk of their series if they want to win the American League West. They have a slight lead over the Los Angeles Angels, and Oakland made some important moves this past week: the organization activated Josh Reddick from the disabled list and designated Jim Johnson for assignment.
7-24-14: The baseball-leading Athletics missed several chances to move a season-high 25 games over .500 Tuesday as they fell to the Astros 3-2. Scott Kazmir, who had won his previous two starts, struck out six in seven innings. He allowed seven hits and two runs. Despite losing Tuesday, Oakland is the most balanced and talented team in baseball top to bottom. Their next two series are against the Rangers and Astros again.
7-21-14: The Oakland Athletics ruffled a few feathers when they acquired Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel, most notably those of starting pitcher Tommy Milone. Milone has requested a trade after being sent down to Triple-A for the third time this season. Who could blame Milone who has posted a 6-0 record and a 2.62 ERA in 11 starts in one stretch with the A’s. Milone is a left handed starting pitcher with a ton of team control remaining as he will not be arbitration eligible until this offseason. Oakland does not seem willing to give Millone the trade he requested although nothing is confirmed at this point. Oakland would rather keep Millone around for depth purposes or as an insurance policy just in case a pitcher is not effective down the stretch. Oakland is in a dog fight with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the AL West and lead the Angels by only 1.5 games in the division.
7-19-14: On Monday, Yoenis Cespedes became just the second player in Major League Baseball history to win the Home Run Derby in consecutive years. Then, the Athletics began the second half of the season with a walkoff home run on Friday. Oakland was down by two runs in the bottom of the ninth inning when Josh Donaldson hit a three-run home run off Zach Britton to defeat the American League East-leading Baltimore Orioles, 5-4.
7-17-14: The A's dropped a series to the Mariners over last weekend, and the Angels are closing on them quick, but there is no other team better then Oakland at the All-Star break. The A’s plus-145 run differential remains the best in baseball by a long shot. The Angels are second at plus-89, and no National League team is better than the Nationals at plus-61. The additions of Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel have solidified the starting rotation. The Angels and Mariners aren't going to make things easy, but Oakland looks like the team to beat in the majors right now.
7-15-14: The Oakland Athletics have acquired pitcher Rodolfo Fernandez for an international bonus slot worth $339K from the Milwaukee Brewers. This was the first international bonus slot trade in this year’s signing period that began on July 2nd. The A’s have designated Jeff Francis for assignment to make room for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel and Francis was in turn shipped to the New York Yankees with cash for a player to be named later. It is expected that the player the A’s receive in return will be a marginal player at best but Oakland got a huge upgrade in Hammel and Samardzija. The Athletics are 59-36 going into the break which is good for first place in the AL West division. The A’s will also be in attendance to watch All Stars Josh Donaldson and defending champion Yoenis Cespedes in the Home Run Derby this season.
7-14-14: Surprisingly, both of the Athletics’ new pitchers suffered losses during the last few days. On Wednesday, Jason Hammel dropped his debut with Oakland as the Athletics offense only scratched across two runs against Matt Cain and the San Francisco Giants. On Friday, Felix Hernandez outpitched Jeff Samardzija. However, on Thursday, Josh Donaldson hit his 20th home run of the season and Scott Kazmir led the Athletics to the 6-1 victory over the Giants.
7-10-14: With 57 victories, the Oakland A’s have their most wins ever before the All-Star break and lead MLB by a long shot. A’s starter Sonny Gray, who improved to 9-3 on the year, fanned eight to win his third straight decision, as the A's beat the San Francisco Giants 6-1 on Tuesday night for their sixth consecutive victory. Oakland has given up only five runs in their last six games played. The A's have outscored the Giants 11-1 in the first two games of the Bay Bridge Series following a 5-0 win Monday. The series now shifts across San Francisco Bay to AT&T Park for two games.
7-7-14: The Athletics have been busy the last few weeks, and they finally completed a trade with the Chicago Cubs late Friday night. Oakland acquired Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel for Addison Russell, Billy McKinney, Dan Straily and a player to be named later. Although the Detroit Tigers swept the Athletics earlier in the week, Sonny Gray pitched Oakland to a 4-1 victory on Thursday, and the Athletics had a walkoff win on Friday.
7-3-14: The A’s were on the wrong side of history for the second straight night Tuesday. On Monday, they gave up a game-winning grand-slam to Detroit’s Rajai Davis, the Tigers first in 10 years. Tuesday, Tiger’s starter Rick Porcello became the first MLB pitcher since 1989 to throw a shutout without walking or striking out a batter. Brad Mills took the loss for Oakland, allowing three runs on six hits in six-plus innings of work. Oakland needs to be careful as the surging Angels are only 3 ½ games back of the A’s in the AL West.
7-2-14: The Oakland Athletics have long sought to leave the Oakland Coliseum and take the team to a more profitable part of California but instead signed a 10 year deal with the Oakland Co. Coliseum this week. The deal is not official until the City of Oakland votes on the matter and four members of the counsel are boycotting the deal delaying the deal. The A’s are still dominating Major League Baseball with the best run differential in all of baseball and a record of 51-30 leading the American League West division. The A’s are 8-2 in their last 10 games including a four game winning streak which have vaulted them to a 5.5 game lead over the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the division.
6-30-14: The Athletics own the league’s best record for many reasons, and one of them is closer Sean Doolittle who has not given up a run since April 26. He finished both of Oakland’s victories on Wednesday and Friday. Coco Crisp’s solo home run and his 3-for-5 night led the A’s to the 8-5 win on Wednesday against the New York Mets. Oakland had a four-run rally in the top of the ninth inning on Friday to defeat the Miami Marlins, 9-5.
6-26-14: Scott Kazmir was first-round draft pick by the New York Mets in 2002 but was sent to Tampa Bay in an unpopular trade in 2004. Well, Kazmir flopped in his first start ever in Queens Tuesday night as the A’s were crushed, 10-1, by the Mets. Kazmir entered with the AL's best ERA (2.08) and on a four-game winning streak. However, he was out of the game after only three innings and a season-high seven runs. His ERA rose to 2.66. The A’s still retain MLB’s best record and have a four game lead on the Angels in the AL West.
6-24-14: The Oakland Athletics have been hot this week and have won seven of their last ten games with by far the biggest run differential in all of Major League Baseball. The A’s looked to get even tougher by acquiring Brad Mills from the Milwaukee Brewers for cash considerations. Mills had an opt out date built into his Brewers contract and his 1.56 ERA and 9.2 K/9 in 75 innings made the Brewers get something for him rather than nothing. Mills was acquired for $1, yes one dollar, from Milwaukee so I guess that’s something and more than nothing. In a corresponding roster move the A’s designated Justin Marks for assignment and the left hander was quickly claimed by the Texas Rangers.
6-18-14: Derek Norris hit a pinch-hit homer and drove in five runs and Stephen Vogt went 3 for 3 with two RBI as the Oakland Athletics roughed up Yu Darvish and beat the Texas Rangers 10-6 this past Tuesday night. Norris is 4 for 11 with five RBI as a pinch-hitter. Tommy Milone won his fifth straight game to improve to 5-3 on the year as the A's won their third in four games. A's LHP Drew Pomeranz was placed on the 15-day DL with a broken right hand. He was injured when he punched the back of a chair Monday night. Oakland remains atop the AL West with a 4 1/2 game lead on the Angels.
6-17-14: The Oakland Athletics are said to be interested in a starting pitching upgrade this trading deadline and definitely have the catching depth to get a deal done. This is a scary proposition for other teams in the American League West as the A’s have two of the best pitchers in the AL this season already in Scott Kazmir and Sonny Gray with added solid contributions from the likes of Drew Pomeranz and Jesse Chavez. The A’s have the highest run differential in all of major league baseball and are looking to improve the team in any way they can this trading deadline. The deadline started a little early for Oakland this year as they were involved in a minor trade with the Chicago White Sox that sent outfielder Michael Taylor to Chicago for A-Ball pitcher Jake Sanchez.
6-10-14: The Oakland Athletics are probably going to add some offense at second base at this year’s trading deadline since the combination of Eric Sogard, Nick Punto, and Alberto Callaspo is not exactly tearing the cover off the ball. Oakland was also said to be relatively close to a deal that would have sent high priced relief pitcher and former closer Jim Johnson to the Miami Marlins last week before backing out at the last minute. If there is another team willing to take on his salary and his erratic nature, namely the Yankees, Orioles, and Tigers, the A’s may rid themselves of the salary and bring up some of their pitching depth from Triple-A to fill the void.
6-3-14: The Oakland Athletics completed their trade for the Padres Kyle Blanks by sending their 16th best prospect in their farm system, Ronald Herrerra, to San Diego. Herrerra is just 19 years old and is already in Class-A Ball with a 94 MPH fastball and a polished three pitch arsenal. The A’s are still leading the American League West division and it is on the backs of stellar starting pitching, most notably Scott Kazmir, Sonny Gray, and Drew Pomeranz. Yoenis Cespedes still leads the team on the offensive side both in heart and production. Josh Donaldson leads all American League third basemen in early All Star Game voting and would start the game if the voting ended today.
5-28-14: The Oakland Athletics have long been known for building their team from within their farm system and acquiring under the radar type players in free agency but the A’s are doing business differently these days. The A’s only have two homegrown players currently on the roster, Sonny Gray and Sean Doolittle. Billy Beane has instead filled his roster via free agency and trades and have gotten the most out of their players with platoons, shifts, and a dominant bullpen and pitching staff. The A’s are still sitting at the top of the American League West division but after getting swept by the Toronto Blue Jays over the Memorial Day weekend find themselves with little breathing room in the division with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim breathing down their necks.
5-21-14: The Oakland Athletics and Billy Beane are already gearing up to make everyone look bad at the trading deadline. Beane started the trading deadline season by acquiring Kyle Blanks from the San Diego Padres for minor league outfielder Jake Goebbert and a player to be named later or cash considerations. The Athletics needed a right handed power bat that could play first base and the outfield and Blanks was the best available player that fit the bill and the A’s acquired him for next to nothing. The A’s find themselves in first place in the American League West division and have an American League best 28-16 record. The A’s are 9-1 in their last 10 games and are beginning to separate themselves from the rest of the pack in their division.
5-15-14: The Oakland Athletics have gotten the most production out of their catching core of any team in the Major Leagues this season. Derek Norris and John Jaso have combined for a triple slash of .338/.419/.507 through 184 plate appearances and have accumulated a 1.9 WAR already. It goes to show you that General Manager Billy Beane is still on top of his game even after the rest of the league caught up to his money ball antics because both Norris and Jaso were acquired via trades with the Washington Nationals. Norris was brought over in the Gio Gonzalez deal and Jaso was brought over in the Mike Morse deal that involved three teams. The A's have the best record in the American League West division and have the highest run differential in the American League through two weeks of May baseball.
5-7-14: The Oakland Athletics have lost half of their pitching staff to various injuries, including a couple Tommy John surgery for Jarrod Parker and A.J. Griffin, but the A's still have the best record in the American League West and the entire American League. Sonny Gray and Scott Kazmir have anchored the staff that is already said to be interested in adding another at the July, 31 trading deadline this summer. The A's may be willing to trade back stop John Jaso for starting pitching or some of their bullpen depth to strengthen the rotation.
4-28-14: The Oakland Athletics have been one of the hardest hit teams when it comes to injury in the first month of the 2014 season, especially in the starting rotation. A.J. Griffin and ace Jarrod Parker are both lost to Tommy John surgery making Sonny Gray the new #1 starter out in Oakland. Speaking of Oakland, the Oakland Coliseum may not be the home of the Oakland Athletics for much longer as the organization has rejected a new 10 year lease with the facility and are considering moving elsewhere for the 2016 season and beyond. If the A's want to sell tickets and make a real case for relocating the team they are going to have to bring in or develop star power and have been linked to Scott Boras client and free agent Kendrys Morales recently for their designated hitter and first base slot even though Morales is still linked to draft pick compensation until June. The A's are still leading the American League West division despite all the injuries and have had the best record in the American League for much of the first month of the season. Reward the A's players by voting them into the MLB All Star Game as voting has started for the game this week.
4-14-14: The two-time defending AL West champs are off to a fine start in 2014, as their 8-4 mark has them atop the division once again. They’ve been on quite a run since going just 1-1 to get the season going, winning seven of their last 10 games. They took two-of-three in Seattle against the Mariners over the weekend, and their 2.17 team ERA is the second-best in the entire league. Sonny Gray is looking like an ace early on, as the youngster is already 2-0 with a paltry 0.95 ERA in three starts.
4-7-14: Starting pitching was a preseason concern for the Oakland A’s, who already have several starters on the shelf. Sonny Gray has helped ease those fears, however, as the youngster has looked excellent in each of his first two starts of the 2014 MLB season. He’s struck-out 10 in 12 innings while allowing just one run so far, and helped Oakland to a 6-3 win over the Seattle Mariners Sunday. It’s been an early struggle for both Josh Donaldson and Josh Reddick, as the two have combined for just five hits in 46 combined ABs to this point.
4-1-14: Former Oriole Jim Johnson picked up the loss in his A’s debut after Nyjer Morgan and Nick Swisher knocked-in a pair of runs to give the Tribe a 2-0 lead in the top half of the 9th. Sonny Gray was solid in his start for Oakland, allowing nothing other than five hits over six innings. Oakland’s offense sputtered against Justin Masterson and company, however, mustering just five hits in the game.
3-27-14: The Oakland Athletics are known for building from within and playing moneyball, not signing and acquiring big money free agents and pitching but they did just that in 2014. Now Jim Johnson, Luke Gregerson, and Eric O'Flaherty look to make General Manager Billy Beane look like a genius once again. What does Beane know that the rest of the league doesn't know, again? Sam Fuld was informed that he would make the Opening Day roster after the news that Craig Gentry is injured and would not break camp with the team. Fuld signed a minor league deal with the Oakland A's in January and will be added to the 40 man roster and earn $800 K this season. The A's are playing in a tough division with the Angels, Mariners, and Rangers in the division but the two time American League West division champions will look for the three-peat in 2014.
3-20-14: The Oakland Athletics got some bad news recently with the diagnosis of their ace, Jarrod Parker, headed for a second Tommy John surgery of his young career. The A's did not get much better news with fellow starting pitcher Scott Kazmir either as he has been shut down with left triceps stiffness, never a good sign in a pitcher. The offense responded by beating the Chicago White Sox by a staggering 16-6 score on March, 18, too bad these games don't count. If that were the case Oakland would have one of the best records in their league like they do in the Cactus League this year. Even with the injury news the A's have some things to be optimistic about including Ryan Cook finally making his return to the mound throwing 21 pitches in a simulated game against teammates after being out due to shoulder problems. The A's have spent a lot of resources, mainly the money paid to former Baltimore Orioles closer Jim Johnson, and have the bullpen that could ultimately help them weather the storm of all these pitching losses.
3-13-14: The Oakland Athletics have had quite an offseason and spring training this year. The A's lost their closer in Grant Balfour only to acquire Jim Johnson from the Baltimore Orioles to replace him. The A's are still stacked with Sonny Gray, Jarrod Parker, Yoenis Cespedes, and Josh Donaldson and sell plenty of tickets at the Oakland Coliseum . A's fans also either know the name Addison Russell or are starting to learn the name as he is impressing scouts, fans, and the team in the Cactus League this spring. The A's are a .500 team this spring but look to be much better than that when the games start meaning something early next month.
3-5-14: The Oakland A's avoided arbitration with outfielder Josh Reddick and agreed to a one-year contract. In other transaction news for the Oakland Athletics this off-season they recently signed Eric O'Flaherty to a two year deal worth $7 million.
1-24-14: Last season the Oakland Athletics were a surprise team who outperformed expectations as the won 96 and made the playoffs in 2013. This year they hope to build off that experience even though they will be without their best pitcher from last year as Bartolo Colon signed with the Mets this offseason.
1-7-14: Former Oakland A's pitcher Grant Balfour has been in the news as of late due to his health issues preventing him from signing a deal with the Baltimore orioles. However Oakland plans on having another strong season ahead of them. It was recently announced that the Oakland A's plan to use John Jaso as their primary DH for the upcoming season in 2014. Last season in 70 games Jaso hit 71 with three home runs and 21 RBI.
12-9-13: The Oakland Athletics won the American League West last season record of 96–66 and will look to continue to build upon that success. With a very solid pitching staff and some good pop in the middle of the order the A's are likely eager to get back to playing some baseball and continue building on what they started last you. Oakland recently signed starting pitcher Scott Kazmir to a multiyear deal. Last year the Oakland athletics were a very strong team in their home ballpark. However they eventually lost to the Detroit Tigers in the American League division series.
10-8-13: After never being given much of a chance to even make the playoffs the Oakland Athletics are leading the Detroit Tigers 2-1 after using the long ball to help secure a 6-3 victory today. They head to Detroit where on Tuesday they look to punch their ticket to the ALCS.
9-30-13: The Oakland A's with the surprise of the season in the American League winning 95 games and clinching the American League West division with a late surge that push them past the Texas Rangers. One of Oaklands main strengths was there solid play at home in which only the Boston Red Sox had a better home record. Oakland is seven and three in the last 10 games. When it comes to slugging percentage the Oakland A's are fifth overall at the .418. Over the weekend they will travel to Seattle and finished their season against the Seattle Mariners. Starting pitcher Bartolo Cologne had a great year at 18–6 with an ERA of 2.65.
8-20-13: The Oakland Athletics are comfortable in their wild-card lead and in second place in the American League West division. Currently they are .5 games out of first place with a record of 71 – 53. The Oakland Athletics are +70 in terms of run differential on the season. They have also won two straight games. The Athletics have 39 home wins and that is the best in the American League West.
8-6-13: The Oakland Athletics are in first place with a record of 64 – 47. Despite being only 5-5 in the last 10 games the Oakland Athletics have a two-game lead for first place over theTexas Rangers. This week they will head to Cincinnati to take on the Reds.
7/31/13 - The A's have traded for Angels infielder Alberto Callaspo. In the deal they will send Class AAA infielder Grant Green to the Angels.
7/18/13 - The Oakland Athletics are in first place of the AL West and seem to be heading strong into the playoffs. Heading into the break they are winners of two straight along with seven of their last 10. They have a two game lead over the Texas Rangers for first place. The A’s are +62 in terms of run differential and have scored the 8th most runs in baseball. Starting pitching Bartolo Colon has been super impressive with a 12-3 record and a team-leading ERA of 2.70. In 126 innings pitched Colon has only walked 15 batters while striking out 70. Second year player from Cuba, Yoenis Cespedes has struggled average-wise but has put up decent power numbers with 15 home runs and 43 RBIs. Cespedes was a participant and won the 2013 HR derby. After the break Oakland will face Angels in a three game set.
7/7/13 - 40-year-old starting pitcher Bartolo Colon was the only Oakland Athletic named as a 2013 American League all-star. So far in 2013, the right hander is 11-3 with a 2.78 ERA in 17 starts for the A's.
6/12/13 - Once again the Oakland A's have built a solid core to take the diamond night in and night out. This week the As will begin a three-game series at home against the New York Yankees. Led by third baseman Josh Donaldson who is batting .324, and Yoenis Cespedes Is batting .241 but leads the team with 13 homeruns, Oakland is currently in second place only one game behind the first-place Texas Rangers. Veteran pitcher Bartolo Cologne leads the team in both wins and ERA, and kept that hot start going by defeating the Yankees on Tuesday night.