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Spring Game Thread #23: A’s vs. White Sox

The A’s try to wrap up a hectic weekend with a win.

Oakland Athletics v Chicago Cubs Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Hello all! It’s been such a crazy weekend that I think it’s appropriate to start things off with a link dump. Here’s been some of the stuff that has happened in the last 72 hours:

  • Jharel Cotton will need Tommy John surgery. This was a heavy blow for the young pitcher looking to find stability, both for himself and for the A’s rotation, after an up-and-down first full year in the bigs. Given the normal timeline for TJ recovery, the earliest we can realistically expect to see Cotton again at the major league level will be mid-2019, meaning some more pitching acquisitions are probably necessary...
  • Enter Trevor Cahill, old friend and new addition to the staff on a minor league deal. While Cahill has struggled to recover his old magic since leaving the squad after the 2011 season, he could slot into our pitching staff either as a long reliever out of the pen or possibly even a 5th starter to bring some veteran presence to an extremely young and raw rotation. Somehow, Cahill is only 30, so there is theoretically still some gas left in the tank.
  • The A’s made a number of roster moves this morning, including optioning Chris Bassitt to AAA and reassigning AJ Puk and Sean Murphy to the minor league camp. Puk has shown us pretty much what we expected, which is a mixture of dominant stuff and developing control, so this isn’t a huge surprise, though I’m hesitant to read the replies on Twitter about this.
  • The city of Oakland is pursuing full ownership of the Coliseum complex. After years of sharing the land with Alameda County, this could simplify future development of the land and portend towards the A’s staying at the Coliseum site. However, the A’s are also meeting with the Board of Port Commissioners in a closed-door meeting on Thursday, so it seems multiples sites are still in play for our next ballpark.

Phew! I hope that covers most of the big news. Anyway, for today’s game, Jesus Luzardo will be taking the mound as Oakland’s starting pitcher. Ranked #6 in our Community Prospect List this year, the lefty pitcher acquired in last season’s Madson/Doolittle trade has tremendous upside tempered by a scary injury history. Though he had Tommy John surgery at a young age, he has recovered about as well as possible so far and has blitzed through the lower levels of the minors. If he continues his pace, Luzardo could be a top-of-rotation starter at the major league level as early as sometime next year. As far as I can tell (Spring Training stats are hard to come by), he’s pitched 1 inning this Spring in relief and it went fine.

Here’s today’s roster:

Praise be to the Jesus Lizard. May his breaking ball break and his fastball cut.

Game time is 1:05 PT. Go A’s!