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Tag:Athletics
Posted on: September 21, 2010 1:02 am
Edited on: September 21, 2010 1:02 am
 

Carter finally gets first hit

Chris Carter finally got his major-league hit, and it only took 34 trips to the plate.

Carter cranked a single to left field to lead off the seventh against the White Sox after previously grounding into a double-play and walking. A thin smile crossed his lips as he stood on first and couldn't help but crack a grin as the first-base coach congratulated him.

Carter, a top power prospect, can now breathe easy that his first hit is behind him. He hammered 31 home runs for Triple-A before being recalled earlier this season as a 23-year-old aquired from the Diamondbacks for Dan Haren.

-- Evan Brunell

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Category: MLB
Posted on: September 20, 2010 9:03 pm
 

Crisp's season likely done

Coco Crisp Coco Crisp is done for the year -- unless the Athletics make the playoffs, as Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports .

That's rather far-fetched, thanks to Oakland's nine-game deficit in the AL West. So let's call it a season for the center fielder.

And what a season it was. Even though Crisp continued his injury-prone streak, he had his best season according to OPS since his final year with Cleveland in 2005. That means he outproduced what he did in his first four years with the Red Sox and 2009 with the Royals.

A .279/.342/.438 mark with 32 stolen bases as a 30-year-old in 328 plate appearances has the team heavily considering exercising the switch-hitter's $5.75 million club option.

The Athletics are steeped in outfielders, having Rajai Davis, Ryan Sweeney, Jack Cust, Gabe Gross, Eric Patterson, Jake Fox, Conor Jackson, Matt Carson, Jeff Larish, Travis Buck, Chris Carter, Matt Watson and Jeremy Hermida along with Crisp appearing in the outfield in 2010.

However, Patterson and Fox are no longer with the organization and the future's of Cust, Gross, Carson, Buck and Watson likely don't include the A's in 2011 -- and of all the outfielders, Crisp has been the most productive.

Seems like an easy call to exercise the option.

-- Evan Brunell

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Category: MLB
Posted on: September 18, 2010 7:57 pm
 

Carter continues playing despite hitless streak

Chris Carter Chris Carter has gone hitless for his first 27 at-bats entering play Saturday, but A's manager Bob Geren has no plans to bench the top prospect.

Carter, who launched 31 home runs and 29 doubles in Triple-A, has looked completely lost in the plate, working just one walk in his time in the majors. He's punched out 11 times and hit seven ground balls as compared to seven line drives and one fly. Not exactly the big-time power Carter is known for.

"I'm putting him in there because I think he's had some good swings," Geren told MLB.com , slotting Carter in left field for Saturday's game. "He's having good at-bats. I don't feel like he's struggling. He struggled last time he was here, swinging at pitches out of the zone. But he's swinging at good pitches, so I don't want to say he's struggling when he's not."

The first baseman who is seeing time in left thanks to Daric Barton's play at first, is the longest hit streak to start a career by a non-pitcher since Vic Harris went zip for his first 36 in 1972 for the Rangers. Not exactly company one wants to keep.

"He'll get his hit," Geren said. "He's a very confident, young man. I'm not too worried about him."

  -- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .
Category: MLB
Posted on: September 13, 2010 11:44 am
Edited on: September 13, 2010 11:44 am
 

A's rookie reaches end of long road

Bobby Cramer
September call-ups always bring with them some great stories, and one of the best in recent memory will be on display Monday night when Bobby Cramer takes the mound for the A's in Kansas City.

According to the Athletics, Cramer, 30, will be the second-oldest American-born starting pitcher to debut since 1957, and the fourth-oldest player in Oakland history to make a big-league debut.

The path Cramer took to get to this point would have beaten most people. He was a 38th-round draft pick in 2001, underwent Tommy John surgery the next year, and walked away from baseball in 2005 after failing to make it out of Class A. As he told MLB.com, he spent two years out of the game working as a gas pipeline maintenance worker and a math teacher before the A's gave him a second shot at minor-league baseball in 2007.

Shoulder troubles ended that stint, and he spent 2008 pitching in an independent league before the A's signed him again. He reached Triple-A in 2009, then Oakland loaned him to the Tigres de Quintana Roo of the Mexican League this season. He went 13-3 with a 2.95 ERA, was brought back to the U.S. and assigned to Triple-A Sacramento (photo courtesy of the River Cats), and went 2-2 with a 1.94 ERA in seven starts.

Now he'll finally see his dream come to fruition with family and friends in the stands.

"It's a good story on a personal level," A's manager Bob Geren said. "But on a baseball level, he's been [Sacramento's] best pitcher, and that's what we tend to do. If we need a spot, we go with who's the hottest, and he's been throwing the ball well."

-- David Andriesen

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Category: MLB
Posted on: September 12, 2010 8:38 pm
Edited on: September 12, 2010 8:43 pm
 

Report: A's to sign Iwamura

To say Akinori Iwamura's season was disappointing would be an understatement. He entered the year as Pittsburgh's highest-paid player, was banished to the minors after putting up a horrendous .182/.292/.267 line in 54 games, and finally was released on Friday.

It appears the Athletics are willing to take him on as a reclamation project, as the San Francisco Chronicle reports that they'll sign him Monday. The A's need another third baseman with Kevin Kouzmanoff sidelined and Jeff Larish, plucked off waivers from the Tigers on August 3, in a .174/.255/.348 death spiral since arriving in Oakland.

Iwamura, 31, was a standout player in Japan and showed in his first three years in Tampa Bay that he can play (.281 average with good defense), but the fact that he's Oakland's best option at this point is not a great sign for the A's.

-- David Andriesen

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Posted on: September 12, 2010 2:23 pm
Edited on: September 12, 2010 2:24 pm
 

A's flagship goes broke

"The Oakland A's are so cheap ..."

"How cheap are they?"

"They're so cheap, even their radio station is bankrupt!"

It's true. The Athletics' flagship station, KTRB, went belly-up at the end of the week and is now in receivership and property of Comerica Bank. Things got so bad that, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, the station had transmissions interrupted because of unpaid fuel bills.

Oakland broadcasts will continue on the station for now, and the station's troubles could actually present the team with an opportunity. The A's could buy the station, which should be available cheap at auction, and run it themselves rather than paying someone else to broadcast their content. And KTRB is a 50,000-watt station, plenty strong enough should the A's move to San Jose.

-- David Andriesen

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Category: MLB
Tags: Athletics
 
Posted on: September 11, 2010 7:15 pm
 

A's bring back skipper Geren

The Athletics have exercised manager Bob Geren's option for 2011, reports Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle .

Geren replaced Ken Macha for the 2007 season at age 45 and has compiled a 296-329 record to date, including a 70-70 showing in 2010, surprising many. While the Athletics continue to struggle offensively, Geren has oversaw a rebuilding of the A's that see a pitching-rich squad only a couple bombers away from being playoff-caliber.

Geren is thought to work closely with the front office, a problem that existed under Macha and previous skipper Art Howe. When hired, it was bandied about that Geren was simply nothing but a mouthpiece -- a lackey. These questions have been put to rest. While managers and front-office executives should have good relationships, it's typically not viewed as a positive for managers to bend to the front office's beck and call.

That was part of why the A.J. Hinch-as-manager experiment failed in Arizona -- a perceived closeness with GM Josh Byrnes.

The contractual details of Geren's contract are unclear, with the only known salary coming in 2007 when Geren earned $500,000. That number is certainly appreciably larger by now.

  -- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .

Category: MLB
Posted on: September 11, 2010 6:38 pm
 

Devine won't pitch for A's

The Athletics thought they had a real find on their hands after acquiring Joey Devine from the Braves prior to the 2008 season for Mark Kotsay.

As a 24-year-old, Devine posted a 0.59 ERA in 45 2/3 innings, whiffin 49 and walking 15.

The only problem was a two-month respite on the disabled list due to right-elbow inflammation that ballooned to Tommy John surgery after the season, causing Devine to miss the entire 2009 season.

And in case you haven't been following Oakland's boxscores, the name "Devine, Joey" hasn't appeared in box scores for the A's at all in 2010. Manager Bob Geren told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle Saturday that Devine will not pitch for the A's at all, causing the righty to miss two years to what is normally a fairly standard surgery these days.

Instead, Devine will pitch in instructional league in the hopes of pairing with Brad Ziegler and Andrew Bailey for a dominant bullpen in 2011.

  -- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .

Category: MLB
 
 
 
 
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