Posted on: January 29, 2012 10:17 pm
By C. Trent Rosecrans
With Trevor Cahill and Gio Gonzalez gone, Brandon McCarthy will be the A's starter on opening day in Tokyo against the Mariners, manager Bob Melvin said during the team's FanFest on Sunday.
McCarthy, 28, could be the only returning starter from last year's Oakland rotation after the offseason trades of Cahill and Gonzalez. McCarthy was 9-9 with a 3.32 ERA in 2011, striking out 123 in 170 2/3 innings and 25 starts. He threw five complete games and posted a 1.131 WHIP.
"That would be a lot of fun," McCarthy told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle when told of Melvin's statement that he'd likely start the first game of the season. "That's one of those notches anyone would like to have."
Newly signed Bartolo Colon will start the other game in Japan, Melvin said. Colon, 38, signed a one-year, $2 million deal with the A's after going 8-10 with a 4.00 ERA for the Yankees in 2011.
Oakland will play Seattle at the Tokyo Dome on March 28 and 29, before any other games start. Felix Hernandez will most likely get the start for the Mariners.
In addition to the trades of Cahill and Gonzalez, the team lost Rich Harden and traded Guillermo Moscoso.
The A's could round out their rotation with youngsters Brad Peacock, Tom Milone and Jarrod Parker. Oakland picked up the first two in the trade of Gonzalez to the Nationals and Parker came over in the Cahill trade with Arizona.
Another starter, Dallas Braden, will throw off the mound on Monday for the first time since shoulder surgery, he told Slusser. Braden compared Monday's session of 25 fastballs to Christmas -- "Get to bed early, leave cookies and milk on the table, see what happens."
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