Ryan Madson Set to Sign With A’s on 3 Year Deal

Veteran reliever Ryan Madson and the Oakland Athletics have agreed to a 3 year deal worth $22 million. The deal is not yet official as it is pending a physical.

This move will make long strides in shoring up a miserable 2015 bullpen. Madson was 1-2 with a 2.13 in 68 games for the World-Series Champ Kansas City Royals. The true question mark is his health. Prior to 2015 Madson missed the 3 previous seasons with a variety of arm issues. Signing him to a 3 year deal could be a risk, but it can also be high reward as the Athletics lost 53 games in 2015 by 2 runs or less.

The bullpen in 2016 had already received a boost from from the Athletics front office in the off season. In addition to a healthy Sean Doolittle, who spent a lot of time on the disabled list in 2015. Last week the Athletics added another strong arm in Marc Rzepczynski in a deal that also brought Yonder Alonso from the San Diego Padres to the Athletics for Drew Pomeranz and prospect Jose Torres.  In late-November the Athletics acquired Liam Hendricks from the Toronto Blue Jays for Jesse Chavez.

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Rehab appearances and autographs

The relocation of the Oakland Athletics’s AAA club to Nashville has been a blessing for the Stockton Ports fans. As of June 5th there have been 7 players to make rehab appearances with the Stockton Ports.

The first came on opening night, Josh Reddick rehabbed with the Ports as they opened the season in San Bernadino against the Inland Empire 66ers. Jarrod Parker soon joined the Ports for a couple of rehab starts. This was during a road trip that took them through Visalia and Bakersfield to face the Rawhide and the Blaze. Unfortunately both Reddick’s and Parker’s rehab assignments were on the road.

Coco Crisp was the first home rehab assignment for the Stockton Ports. On May 3rd and 4th Crisp played for the Ports. On Sunday, May 3rd I was able to get a MLB ball and 2 cards signed by Crisp. On Monday, May 4th I was able to get one more card signed a 2015 Topps cards (not pictured).

Coco Crisp autographed ball and cards from rehab appearance with the Stockton Ports on May 3, 2015

Coco Crisp autographed ball and cards from rehab appearance with the Stockton Ports on May 3, 2015

On May 14th and 17th Oakland Athletics’s closer Sean Doolittle made his rehab appearances with the Ports. These were home games, May 14th was a Thursday day game so I couldn’t go due to work. On Sunday, May 17th, I got to see Doolittle pitch, but I was unable to get his autograph because he did not come out to the bullpen until the 3rd inning.

A couple of days later on a road trip to Visalia second baseman Ben Zobrist joined the Ports for a couple of rehab games. On May 23rd Zobrist joined the Nashville Sounds, who happened to be on a West Coast road trip, for a couple for rehab games. I went to the game in Fresno against the Grizzlies and was able to get Zobrist to sign a ball for me.

Ben Zobrist autographed baseball from rehab appearance with Nashville Sounds on May 24, 2015.

Ben Zobrist autographed baseball from rehab appearance with Nashville Sounds on May 24, 2015.

Sunday, May 31st saw the 6th different Athletic to make a rehab appearance with the Ports. Pitcher Drew Pomeranz threw 2 scoreless innings that day. Most recently former Stockton Port and current Oakland Athletic starting pitcher A.J. Griffin made his first rehab appearance coming off of Tommy John Surgery. He threw 3 innings on June 2nd against the Lake Elsinore Storm and before the game Griffin was nice enough to sign a ball for me.

A.J. Griffin autographed baseball from rehab appearance with the Stockton Ports on June 2, 2015

A.J. Griffin autographed baseball from rehab appearance with the Stockton Ports on June 2, 2015

In addition to all of the prospects that Ports fans get to see on a regular basis, we have been treated to quite a few Oakland Athletics rehab assignments this season. I want to thank the Sacramento River Cats for not wanting to be an Athletics affiliate anymore. Without their desire to switch Ports fans may not get to see as many rehab assignments.

 

Dan Straily Optioned to Sacramento

On Friday the Oakland Athletics announced that Dan Straily was optioned to the Sacramento River Cats. While the move comes as somewhat of a surprise, this is a temporary, but necessary move. Straily’s velocity is down a few MPH and his command is not where it should be. This season he started of strong in his first 2 starts, but Dan has struggled in his last 5 starts. Drew Pomeranz will take Straily’s place in the rotation.

His time in Sacramento will allow him to work on his velocity and command in lower pressure situations. The Athletics still consider Dan an important part of the rotation. He just needs a little time to work out some issues. Dan’s first start in Sacramento is projected to be on Monday, May 12th.

Spring Training Prospect Update 03/26/2014

With the Cactus League wrapping up today I thought I would wait until this time to do the final update for Oakland Athletics Prospects. The Athletics finish with a Cactus League record of 13-13-5. While there are some prospects who will be travelling to the Bay Area to play in the Bay Bridge Series, this will essentially be the final Spring Training Update.

Position Players
Anthony Aliotti, 1st base: 1-6, 1 2B, 1 RBI in 6 games
Billy Burns, outfield: 22-71, 12 runs scored, 10 stolen bases in 25 games
Chris Giminez, catcher: 8-33, 3 2B, 3 RBI in 25 games
Jose Martinez, 2nd base: 6-27, 3 RBI, 3 runs scored in 19 games
Bruce Maxwell, catcher: 1-4, 1 2B in 4 games
Billy McKinney, outfield: 5-13, 1 2B, 2 RBI in 12 games
Luke Montz, catcher: 7-24, 2 HR, 5 RBI in 13 games
Max Muncy, 1st base: 1-1, 1 run scored, 1 RBI in 1 game
Ryan Ortiz: 1-3 in 4 games
Shane Peterson, outfield/1st base: 2-12, 4 walks, 1 RBI in 10 games
Daniel Robertson, shortstop: 5-23, 1 RBI in 17 games
Addison Russell, shortstop: 7-25, 2 2B, 3 RBI, 1 stolen base in 12 games
Michael Taylor, outfield: 17-62, 5 2B, 3 HR, 10 RBIs in 26 games

Pitchers
Raul Alcantara: 4 IP, 2 SO
Ryan Dull: 27.00 ERA, 5 ER, 1.2 IP, 2 SO
Seth Frankoff: 1 IP, 1 SO
Arnold Leon: 2.13 ERA, 12.2 IP, 11 SO
Sean Murphy: 4.1IP, 2 SO
Zach Neal: 1 W, 3.2 IP, 6 SO
Drew Pomeranz: 1-1, 3.27 ERA, 11 IP, 18 SO
Nolan Sanburn: 16.20 ERA 1.2IP, 1 SO
Paul Smyth: 3 IP, 3.00 ERA, 1 SO
Jeff Urlaub: 1-1, 8.10 ERA, 3.1 IP
Michael Ynoa: 3 IP,9.00 ERA, 3 SO

Spring Training Prospect Update 03/19/2014

So I’m a couple of days late for this update, but that’s okay. In Spring Training the Oakland Athletics are 10-8-5 heading into play today. Dan Straily will take the mound as the Athletics take on Danny Salazar and the Cleveland Indians at 1:05 at Goodyear Ballpark, the Indians’s Spring Training home. Here is how the Athletics prospects are progressing this Spring.

Position Players
Anthony Aliotti, 1st base: 0-3 in 3 games
Billy Burns, outfield: 14-52, 10 runs scored, 8 stolen bases in 18 games
Chris Giminez, catcher: 4-23, 3 walks in 19 games
Jose Martinez, 2nd base: 6-25, 3 RBI, 3 runs scored in 16 games
*Bruce Maxwell, catcher: 1-4, 1 2B in 4 games
Billy McKinney, outfield: 4-10, 1 2B, 2 RBI in 9 games
Luke Montz, catcher: 7-24, 2 HR, 5 RBI in 13 games
*Max Muncy, 1st base: 1-1, 1 run scored, 1 RBI in 1 game
Ryan Ortiz: 1-2 in 2 games
Shane Peterson, outfield/1st base: 2-12, 4 walks, 1 RBI in 10 games
Daniel Robertson, shortstop: 4-17, 1 RBI in 13 games
*Addison Russell, shortstop: 7-25, 2 2B, 3 RBI, 1 stolen base in 12 games
Michael Taylor, outfield: 14-48, 3 5B, 3 HR, 9 RBIs in 20 games

Pitchers
*Raul Alcantara: 4 IP, 2 SO
*Ryan Dull: 67.50 ERA, 5 ER, 0.2 IP, 1 SO
*Seth Frankoff: 1 IP, 1 SO
Arnold Leon: 2.79 ERA, 9.2 IP, 7 SO
Zach Neal: 1 W, 3.2 IP, 6 SO
Drew Pomeranz: 0-1, 4.26 ERA, 6.1 IP, 11 SO
Paul Smyth: 3 IP, 3.00 ERA, 1 SO
*Jeff Urlaub: 1 W, 1.1 IP
*Michael Ynoa: 3 IP,9.00 ERA, 3 SO

*Reassigned to Minor League Camp.

Spring Training Prospect Update 03/10/2014

For the second time in two days the Oakland Athletics ended the game in a tie. Sunday was a 2-2 tie with the Chicago White Sox and today was an 8-8 tie against the Los Angeles Dodgers.  Here is how the Athletics’s Prospects are faring this Spring.

Position Players
Anthony Aliotti, 1st base: 0-2 in 2 games
Billy Burns, outfield: 9-35, 7 runs scored, 7 stolen bases in 12 games
Chris Giminez, catcher: 2-15, 3 walks in 12 games
Jose Martinez, 2nd base: 5-20, 3 RBI, 3 runs scored in 11 games
Bruce Maxwell, catcher: 1-4, 1 2B in 4 games
Billy McKinney, outfield: 1-3, in 4 games
Luke Montz, catcher: 3-14, 3 RBI in 9 games
Max Muncy, 1st base: 1-1, 1 run scored, 1 RBI in 1 game
Shane Peterson, outfield/1st base: 2-12, 4 walks, 1 RBI in 10 games
Daniel Robertson, shortstop: 2-5, in 7 games
Addison Russell, shortstop: 7-25, 2 2B, 3 RBI, 1 stolen base in 12 games
Michael Taylor, outfield: 10-31, 3 2B, 2 HR, 3 RBIs in 13 games

Pitchers
Raul Alcantara: 4 IP, 2 SO
Ryan Dull: 0.2 IP, 1 SO
Seth Frankoff: 1 IP, 1 SO
Arnold Leon: 7 IP, 6 SO
Zach Neal: 1 W, 1.2 IP, 2 SO
Drew Pomeranz: 0-1, 8.10 ERA, 3.1 IP, 4 SO
Paul Smyth: 1 IP, 9.00 ERA, 1 ER
Jeff Urlaub: 1 W, 1.1 IP
Michael Ynoa: 3 IP,9.00 ERA, 3 SO

This feature will be updated every Monday through Spring Training.

Spring Training Prospect Update 03/03/2014

After today’s 7-3 victory over Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Oakland Athletics now have a record of 4-1-1. Here is how the prospects are progressing this Spring.

Position Players
Billy Burns, outfield: 5-16, 4 runs scored, 5 stolen bases in 6 games
Jose Martinez, 2nd base: 3-10, 1 RBI, 2 runs scored in 5 games
Bruce Maxwell, catcher: 0-1, in 1 game
Billy McKinney, outfield: 0-1, in 1 game
Luke Montz, catcher: 2-4, 1 walk in 4 games
Shane Peterson, outfield/1st base: 2-8, 2 walks, 1 RBI in 6 games
Daniel Robertson, shortstop: 0-1, in 1 game
Addison Russell, shortstop: 2-12, 1 RBI, 1 stolen base in 6 games
Michael Taylor, outfield: 2-15, 1 walk, 2 RBIs in 6 games

Pitchers
Raul Alcantara: 2 IP, 1 SO
Ryan Dull: 0.2 IP, 1 SO
Arnold Leon: 2 IP, 2 SO
Zach Neal: 1 W, 1.2 IP, 2 SO
Drew Pomeranz: 1 IP, 2 SO
Paul Smyth: 1 IP, 9.00 ERA, 1 ER
Jeff Urlaub: 0.1 IP
Michael Ynoa: 1.1 IP, 3 H, 1 SO

This feature will be updated every Monday through Spring Training.

Spring Training Prospect Update

Four games are now in the books and with today’s 2-2 tie game against the Texas Rangers, the Oakland Athletics have a record of 2-1-1. Here is how some of the prospects are doing in the first four games of Spring Training:

Position Players
Billy Burns, outfield: 4-11, 3 runs scored, 4 stolen bases in 4 games
Jose Martinez, 2nd base: 3-8, 1 RBI, 2 runs scored in 4 games
Bruce Maxwell, catcher: 0-1, in 1 game
Billy McKinney, outfield: 0-1, in 1 game
Luke Montz, catcher: 2-4 in 3 games
Shane Peterson, outfield/1st base: 1-7, 1 RBI in 4 games
Daniel Robertson, shortstop: came in game as a pinch runner for Luke Montz on 3/1/14
Addison Russell, shortstop: 1-9, 1 RBI in 4 games
Michael Taylor, outfield: 2-9, 1 walk, 1 RBI in 4 games

Pitchers
Raul Alcantara: 2 IP, 1SO
Ryan Dull: 0.2 IP, 1SO
Arnold Leon: 2IP, 2 SO
Zach Neal: 1W, 1.2 IP, 2 SO
Drew Pomeranz: 1IP, 2 SO
Michael Ynoa: 1.1IP, 3H, 1SO

This will be a weekly update on Mondays beginning March 3rd.

New in Oakland, Part 3: Minor Leaguers

This is the third installment of a 3 part series introducing the newest members of the Oakland Athletics. These players were either signed as a free agent or traded for during the off season.  This third installment will introduce the new key minor league players not on Oakland’s 40-man roster.  These players figure prominently in Oakland’s future.

Sam Fuld, outfielder – Sam was signed to a Minor League contract earlier this month. He has spent parts of the last three seasons with the Tampa Bay Rays. His contract includes an invite to the Major League spring training camp. He will compete for a possible 5th outfielder spot, if the Athletics are to carry 5 outfielders into the season. You can read our post about the signing here: A’s sign Fuld

Billy Burns, outfielder – Billy was acquired by the Athletics from the Washington Nationals in exchange for reliever Jerry Blevins in early-December. Billy has proven to be a terror on the base paths as he swiped 74 bags in 121 games in 2013. He is also very capable of getting on base. In the past 3 seasons Billy has an OBP of .421. The Athletics will likely start the 23 year old in Midland with the RockHounds, but if he has a great spring he could break camp with the River Cats.

Dusty Brown, catcher – Dusty was signed by the Athletics to a Minor League contract in January. He was out of baseball for the 2013 season and has 24 games of Major League experience. His contract included an invitation to the Major League spring training camp. With the crowd of catchers the Athletics have at the Major League and AAA level it is possible the Athletics could move the Minor League veteran to an infield position. 

Chris Jensen, pitcher – Chris was acquired with Drew Pomeranz in the deal that sent Brett Anderson to the Colorado Rockies. He was 5-8 with a 4.55 ERA with the Modesto Nuts in the 2013 season. Chris is a solid starting pitcher, but could likely find himself starting for the Stockton Ports in 2014 as the 23 year old could use a little more experience before making the jump to AA.

New in Oakland, Part 1: Pitchers

This is the first installment of a 3 part series introducing the newest members of the Oakland Athletics. These players were either signed as a free agent or traded for during the off season.  This first installment will introduce the new pitchers on Oakland’s 40-man roster.  These players may or may not make the opening day lineup, but figure prominently in Oakland’s future.

Scott Kazmir, starting pitcher – Scott was signed as a free agent to a 2 year contract in December. The 30 year old missed the entire 2012 season and made a comeback with the Cleveland Indians last year. In 2013 he went 10-9 with a 4.04 ERA, 162 strikeouts and 1.32 WHIP in 29 games.  Scott figures to be the Athletics’ No. 2 started behind Jarrod Parker.

Jim Johnson, closer – Jim was acquired by the Athletics in exchange for the struggling Jemile Weeks and catcher David Freitas. Jim was a league leader in saves last year as he earned 50 in 59 opportunities. Jim has a 2.94 ERA with a 1.29 WHIP. Jim will take over the closer role previously occupied by Grant Balfour.

Eric O’Flaherty, relief pitcher – Eric was signed as a free agent to a 2 year contract in January. You can see our post about it here: A’s sign O’Flaherty. While Eric is recovering from Tommy John surgery and will not be available until mid-season, Eric was an anchor of the bullpen for the Atlanta Braves over the past 5 years. In his MLB career Eric is 20-9 with a 2.85 ERA, 245 strikeouts in 343 games with the Braves and the Seattle Mariners.

Fernando Abad, relief pitcher – Fernando was dealt by the Washington Nationals to the Athletics for Minor League outfielder John Wooten. In 2013 Fernando was 0-3 with a 3.35 ERA and 32 strikeouts in 39 relief appearances

Luke Gregerson, relief pitcher – Luke was dealt to the Athletics by the San Diego Padres for outfielder Seth Smith. In 2013 Luke was a workhorse on the Padres staff compiling a 6-8 record with a 2.71 ERA and a 1.01 WHIP in 73 relief appearances.

Josh Lindblom, relief pitcher – Josh was a part of the trade that brought Chris Gentry from the Texas Rangers to the Athletics for Michael Choice and Chris Bostick. It is likely that Josh will start the season with the Sacramento River Cats, but he could figure prominently in the bullpen later in the season. In limited duty with the Rangers Josh went 1-3 with a 5.46 ERA in 8 games, 5 of which were starts.

Drew Pomeranz, starting pitcher – Drew was acquired by the Athletics along with minor leaguer Chris Jensen in the trade that sent Brett Anderson to the Colorado Rockies. Drew will begin the year with the Sacramento River Cats and figures to be a starter with the Athletics some time in the next year or two. Drew pitched in 8 games, 4 starts, last season for the Rockies and compiled an 0-4 record, 6.23 ERA in 21.2 innings.