The Oakland A’s won their Cactus League game on Saturday, edging out the Indians 1-0. It’s Oakland’s third straight victory, so it’s officially a winning streak now after dropping the four previous contests. They’ve won four of their nine spring exhibition games overall as they gear up for the regular season.
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There’s not much to tell about the play-by-play in this one. The two teams combined for eight total baserunners and ten 1-2-3 innings, and only once were there two runners on at the same time (Indians in the 2nd). The lone run scored in the 4th, when Matt Chapman led off with a double, moved to third on a groundout, and scored on a wild pitch by Trevor Bauer. No other A’s runner even reached scoring position, and Cleveland only got that far twice.
A few standouts from the box score:
- Paul Blackburn started for Oakland and spun three scoreless frames, retiring 9-of-11 batters.
- Joining Blackburn in the combined shutout: one inning each from Fernando Rodney, Joakim Soria, and Blake Treinen, and then three from Frankie Montas (also retired 9-of-11 batters).
- On offense, Matt Chapman was the only real contributor, with his extra-base hit that set up the sole run. He also made “an OMG play at third base,” according to Martin Gallegos of the East Bay Times.
- The A’s other hits were singles by Robbie Grossman and Dustin Fowler.
There’s nothing much else to say about this game, so instead let’s catch up on a couple piece of noteworthy news.
First, regarding the Opening Day roster, reliever Jerry Blevins and catcher Nick Hundley are “near-locks” to make the team, reports Susan Slusser of the S.F. Chronicle. Both are established veterans who arrived on minor league free agent contracts, and they have opt-out clauses on March 14 ahead of the trip to Japan. That said, in terms of the catcher position, they wouldn’t have to make a final decision on Hundley vs. Josh Phegley until after Japan and ahead of the March 28 home opener, since they get a 28-man roster for the international games.
Meanwhile, there’s also news on the Khris Davis extension talks. The two sides have “been in contact recently about the possibility of a contract extension,” reported insider Jon Morosi on Saturday morning. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic also added some speculation, opining that Khrush could be looking at “slightly higher AAV than (Aaron Hicks’ $10 million average) on a two- or three-year deal.” That’s on the lowest end of what Athletics Nation has tossed around as possible terms for the upcoming pact.
Finally, Oakland made their first round of roster cuts Saturday morning. Click here to read about the four pitching prospects who were sent down, and to see the remaining 59-man spring roster.
The A’s are back in action tomorrow (Sunday), against the Angels at noon. The game will be streamed online on MLB.tv, and AN member JJ209 will have your FanPost Game Thread.