By Matt Snyder
The Oakland Athletics have suffered a big blow to their prospective infield. The club announced Monday night that third baseman Scott Sizemore will miss the entire season, as he's torn the ACL in his left knee. Due to swelling in the knee, Sizemore will be re-evaluated in two weeks to see if a surgery date can then be set.
“I really feel badly for Scott,” manager Bob Melvin said in a release. “He’s worked extremely hard and was ready for a breakout season this year. We were counting on him to provide some much-needed power from the right side of the plate. Now his total focus has to be on a successful surgery and rehabilitation so he can return stronger than ever. In his absence, we feel we have some viable options in Adam Rosales, Eric Sogard and Josh Donaldson. They can all bring something to the position.”
Obviously, season-ending injuries to starters are always big blows, but the A's could have better handled it to an outfielder, where they have Coco Crisp, Josh Reddick, Yoenis Cespedes, Jonny Gomes, Brandon Allen, Collin Cowgill and several others. At third base, the A's were paper thin before this injury.
Melvin mentioned three options, but none are good ones.
Rosales is a 28-year-old utility infielder who logged just 43 innings at third last season. Worse yet, he hit just .098/.162/.197 and is a career .226 hitter who doesn't walk much or have power.
Sogard, 25, hit .200/.243/.329 in 74 plate appearances for the A's last season. He played just 70 innings at third. He's a career .298 hitter against Triple-A pitching with marginal power at best.
Donaldson is a 26-year-old catcher-by-trade, but appeared in 27 games at third in Triple-A last season -- where he hit .261/.344/.439 with 17 homers in 503 plate appearances.
Otherwise, the A's are left scraping the bottom of the barrel -- if they aren't already doing so with Rosales, Sogard or Donaldson -- or searching outside the organization.
Sizemore, 27, hit .249/.345/.433 with 11 homers and 52 RBI for the A's in 93 games after coming over in a late May trade from Detroit.
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