Oakland A’s Huge Slump

Baseball, MLB, Sports

After the A’s broke their Opening Day losing streak, who believed the Athletics would be 13-23 and last in the AL West in the middle of May. It seems like when the A’s bats are on fire, their pitchers are ice-cold. Sonny Gray pitched one of his greatest games ever on May 13th, to bad the A’s went 0-13 with RISP. I am not sure if we can blame it on Bob Melvin, but something has to change. Do we need a new pitching coach? Batting Coach? Manager? I am not sure. Yes, we could blame all of this on Billy Beane, but he isn’t out there blowing leads.

At the trade deadline, I can see the A’s making some major trades. If it’s Scott Kazmir being traded, or maybe the A’s trade a guy like Josh Reddick. The A’s could use a lot of help, trades seem to be the best thing. Their AAA affiliate, Nashville Sounds, currently do not have any players that are worthy of being called up. Ryan Cook, currently has blown 2 saves, R.J. Alvarez and Brad Mills just are not ready to pitch in Oakland. You may say, “why not call up Barry Zito?”, Zito is currently not on the 40-man roster, so someone would have to be designated for assignment. Also Zito is currently 1-3 with a 4.70 ERA. So in my opinion he needs to improve.

Injuries have not seriously hurt they A’s, but some key players have landed on the disabled list. Sean Doolittle, is the closest to coming back, he pitched for the Stockton Ports on Thursday. Sean pitched one inning and allowed 2 home runs and struck out 2. Ben Zobrist is set to rehab on May 18th. A.J. Griffin has minor shoulder soreness, he was expected to start throwing on May 12th. The player that has the biggest set back is Jarrod Parker. Jarrod was pitching for AAA-Nashville, on his 86th pitch Parker threw a wild pitch and immediately fell to the ground in pain. He was diagnosed with a fractured medial epicondyle and was placed on the 60-Day DL.

The Athletics need to figure something out, they need to find a way to win! Three run leads are not safe anymore.

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The Athletics Off-Season

Athletics, Baseball, MLB, Sports

The Oakland A’s have made multiple moves throughout this offseason. As usual, no BIG moves were made by the Athletics front office. But I believe that some of the moves they made are good. The Athletics signed multiple veteran players, including OF Matt Joyce,      C Ryan Lavarnway, 1st baseman Chris Parmelee, OF Jaff Decker, OF Rajai Davis, 3rd baseman Trevor Plouffe, LHP Ross Detwiler, RHP Santiago Casilla, LF Alejandro De Aza.

The Athletics have also made a few trades this winter. Back in November, the A’s traded Danny Valencia to the Mariners for RHP Paul Blackburn. Paul Blackburn is a 23-year-old pitcher out of Antioch, CA. In 2016, Blackburn went 18-10 in AA. In January, the A’s traded OF Brett Eibner to the Dodgers for 3rd baseman Jordan Tarsovich. Jordan is a 25-year-old from Richmond, VA. Between A+ and AA, Tarsovich batted .220 with 18 HRs and 64 RBIs in 180 games. Also in January, the A’s traded Dillon Overton to the Mariners for C Jason Goldstein. Goldstein is a 22-year-old out of Highland Park, IL. Between Rookie ball and A-, Jason batted .279 with the 2 HRs and 6 RBIs in 19 games.

As of now, the A’s projected starting lineup would have CF Rajai Davis leading off, C Stephen Vogt batting second, DH Ryon Healy batting third, LF Khris Davis batting clean-up, RF Matt Joyce batting fifth, SS Marcus Semien batting sixth, 3B Trevor Plouffe batting seventh, 1B Yonder Alonso batting eighth, and 2B Jed Lowrie batting in the nine hole. The Athletics projected pitching rotation looks like this, Sonny Gray, Sean Manaea, Kendall Graveman, Andrew Triggs, and Jharel Cotton. If they A’s elect from a six-man rotation, Zach Neal could be the six man. Do you agree with the current projections? Anything you want to see changed?

 

 

With pitchers and catchers reporting in just two weeks, what other moves would you like to see the A’s make?

 

 

Ryan Benton is a writer for Oakland Athletics Fans since 2010

Twitter: @ryanbenton94

 

With the A’s Streaking, Will a Trade Be Made?

Athletics, Baseball, MLB, Sports

The A’s are currently 47-55 on the season. But since returning from the All Star break, the A’s have won 9 of their 13 contests. It seems like the bats are starting to show up, and the pitching is starting to be on point.

It has been rumored that the Athletics were willing to trade Rich Hill, and Josh Reddick, among others. It had seemed like the A’s were going to give up on the season, and just trade away all their players. But with the A’s playing so well, will they end up trading anyone?

Rich Hill was among the top players to get traded, but recently he has been dealing with a blister on his middle finger. He made his start on July 17th, but he was removed after just 5 pitches, due to that blister. Hill has not made a start since then, and will not make his next start. Rich Hill is 9-3 with a 2.25 ERA on the season. Do not expect Hill to be traded before the deadline.

Another player expected to be traded is Josh Reddick. Josh is the A’s main right fielder, Reddick has made 4 outfield assists, while committing only 2 errors. He has a rocket for an arm, the A’s should not trade him. Reddick is also having a great season at the plate, batting .300 with 7 HRs and only 27 RBIs. He is also getting on base 37.5 percent of the time. Reddick becomes an Unrestricted Free Agent at the end of this season.

There were also lots of rumors the past few months, that RHP Sonny Gray would be traded.  Well, the way Gray has been pitching this season, he will not be traded. This season Gray is  5-9 with 5.43 ERA. He has allowed 17 HRs in only 19 starts. If Sonny can get back to his old ways, he will be one of the hottest names on the trade block this coming offseason.

The A’s are only 9.5 games back from the second wild card spot, and 11 games back from the 1st place Texas Rangers. So if the A’s do not make any trades, and they continue playing the way they have, expect them to be in the playoff hunt.

 

Ryan Benton is a writer for Oakland Athletics Fans since 2010

Twitter: @ryanbenton94

A’s Set to Call-Up Sean Manaea

Athletics, Baseball, MLB, Sports

It was announced Wednesday, that the A’s plan on calling up their #2 prospect, LHP Sean Manaea. This season in AAA, Manaea is 2-0 with a 1.50 ERA. Over the spring, Sean pitched in 5 games, going 1-1 with a 4.40 ERA.

Manaea is set to make his first career start against the Houston Astros on Friday in Oakland.

Will Manaea be able to bring his success from the minors to the Majors?

 

Ryan Benton is a writer for Oakland Athletics Fans

Twitter: @ryanbenton94

A’s trade Kaz to the Astros

Athletics, Baseball, MLB, Sports

The A’s made the first big trade of the year, sending Scott Kazmir to the Houston Astros. In return the A’s received RHP Daniel Mengden and catcher Jacob Nottingham. Mengden currently owns a 6-2 record with a 3.46 ERA in Class-A. Daniel was drafted by the Astros in the 4th round of the 2014 draft.

Jacob Nottingham has great pop off the bat, even at the age of 20. He currrently has a .326 batting average with 14 home runs. Nottingham was drafted by the Astros in the 6th rounds of the 2013 draft. You might say, why do we need a catcher. Stephen Vogt won’t be around forever, we are building towards the future.

After this trade, which was earlier than expected, we will probably see Zobrist, and Clippard being traded next.

Ryan Benton is a writer for Oakland Athletics Fans

Twitter: @ryanbenton94

A’s hang on, beat Tigers 7-5

Athletics, Baseball, MLB, Sports

The A’s finally got there first sweep of the season.

Butler racked up two RBIs on two hits for the Athletics. He doubled in the third inning and singled in the fifth inning.

Jesse Hahn picked up the win for the Oakland Athletics. Hahn pitched seven innings and allowed one earned run, on five hits and one walk while striking out five.

The Detroit Tigers scored on an RBI single by Miguel Cabrera in the sixth inning and an RBI single by Ian Kinsler and a three-run home run by Tyler Collins in the ninth inning.

The game was never in doubt after the second, as the Oakland Athletics scored three runs on an error and a two-run triple by Josh Phegley.

After posting one run in the third, the Oakland Athletics again scored one in the seventh. In the third inning, the Oakland Athletics scored on an RBI double by Billy Butler, plating Stephen Vogt.

Vogt left the game in the 9th with a cramp in his right leg.

W: Jesse Hahn (3-5)

L: Shane Greene (4-5)

S: Tyler Clippard (9)

Ryan Benton is a writer for Oakland Athletics Fans

Twitter: @ryanbenton94

A’s bats heating up; beat Tigers 6-1

Athletics, Baseball, MLB, Sports

Another great start by Sonny Gray, Gray went 8 innings, allowing 2 hits while striking out 7. Sonny had 14 ground ball outs. Fernando Rodriquez pitched the 9th, allowing 1 run on two hits, while striking out one.

The A’s bats have surely woken up. In the 2nd inning, Billy Burns hit a 3 run triple(2) scoring Lawrie, Canha and Sogard. Josh Reddick contributed, hitting a solo home run in the 3rd. No one would score until the 8th, when Lawrie hit an RBI double(10). Vogt added himself to the RBI list, with a sac fly in the 9th. No more runs were needed, since Sonny was on FIRE!

W: Sonny Gray (7-2)

L: Anibal Sanchez (3-7)

Ryan Benton is a writer for Oakland Athletics Fans

Twitter: @ryanbenton94

A’s pitchers struggle, lose to Astros 6-1

Athletics, Baseball, MLB, Sports

A’s bullpen continues to struggle.

The A’s continue to struggle, both defensively and offensively. The A’s had 7 hits in this game, but batters left 11 men on base and were 1-11 with RISP. Jesse Hahn pitched 6 innings allowing 3 runs on 5 hits, while striking out 6. Dan Otero continues to struggle, he pitched 1.1 innings and allowed 3 runs on 3 hits. Why continue using Otero?

Brett Lawrie was the A’s player of the game, going 3-4 with a double. Burns, Reddick, Canha and Gentry all went hitless.

W: Keuchel (6-0)

L: Hahn (1-4)

Ryan Benton is a writer for Oakland Athletics Fans

Twitter: @ryanbenton94