Good morning, Athletics Nation!
Baseball news has cranked up to ludicrous speed over the past week, as the reality of an upcoming season sets in and the beginning of spring training approaches in just a few days. But aside from the rush of player transactions, and rule changes, and schedule tweaks, the Oakland A’s also got a fresh piece of stadium news in their quest to build a ballpark at Howard Terminal.
The latest update comes from Sarah Ravani of the S.F. Chronicle, who reports that the A’s had a court decision go their way. A lawsuit against them in the Alameda County Superior Court, filed by a coalition of local industrial associations that opposes the Howard Terminal ballpark project, was not successful in challenging the team’s ability to perform a necessary Environmental Impact Report. Click the Ravani link for more details.
The previous chapter in the ballpark saga came a few weeks ago, when Dave Stewart entered the bidding to purchase part of the Coliseum complex. The team already owns a half-share of the site they currently play on, but the City of Oakland owns the other half and it’s up for bid; the A’s are also attempting to buy it so they can wholly own the location.
The club had originally committed to open a new park in Oakland by 2023, but the timeline has been stalled both by the coronavirus pandemic and some local opposition. It’s not yet clear what kind of chronology to expect at this moment, but it least it’s not not moving forward anymore.
Thank you @GavinNewsom for certifying the Environmental Impact Report for our waterfront ballpark! @Athletics Big kudos to @LibbySchaaf @RobBontaCA for the original 2018 legislation. Next step: public release of the report + city council vote this year! #RootedInOakland ⚾️ pic.twitter.com/l5xTTdRvcY— Dave Kaval (@DaveKaval) February 12, 2021
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- Today in Baseball History
Back to where the magic began for Arrieta. He pitched for the Cubs from 2013-17, and went from a bust in Baltimore to a 2015 Cy Young in Chicago.
Jake Arrieta will get $6 million guarantee from the #Cubs once he passes physical— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) February 13, 2021
Former Athletic isn’t over the hill yet, entering age 41 (or 64 in elbow years)
Red Sox cornering the market on championship utility players (along with Kiké Hernandez)
Salary terms not yet announced, but Melancon was one of the more interesting relievers left on the board
The Padres and Mark Melancon are in agreement on a deal, pending a physical, sources tell The Athletic.— Dennis Lin (@dennistlin) February 12, 2021
Mariners make an investment in a future reliever
Source confirms: Free-agent reliever Ken Giles in agreement with Mariners on two-year deal. Coming off Tommy John surgery, will be ready for 2022. First: @shannondrayer.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) February 12, 2021
Another reliever off the board
Also, #Rays have now finalized agreement with RHP Collin McHugh, a 1-year deal for $1.8M, per source, also pending physical— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) February 13, 2021
One more reliever
Right-hander David Phelps has signed a one-year, $1.75 million deal with the Toronto Blue Jays, sources tell ESPN. He can earn another $750,000 in performance bonuses. @Feinsand had the signing first.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 11, 2021
Meanwhile, a couple new names have joined the offseason reliever market.
In a surprise move, the Mets have DFA'd Brad Brach to clear 40-man roster space for Jonathan Villar.— Anthony DiComo (@AnthonyDiComo) February 11, 2021
#Dodgers make the signing of Trevor Bauer official. RHP Josh Sborz has been designated for assignment to create an opening on the 40-man roster— Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) February 11, 2021
Nomar Mazara made noise against the A’s in the Wild Card Series last year, with the White Sox
Mazara gets $1.75M plus incentives on Tigers MLB deal— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) February 12, 2021
Marisnick stays in the NL after spending last year on the Mets
Jake Marisnick's deal is guaranteed for $1.5 million with the #Cubs. It will pay him $1M in 2021 with a $4 million mutual option in 2022 or a $500,000 buyout.— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) February 11, 2021
Cabrera has mostly moved to the infield corners lately
Asdrubal Cabrera to the Diamondbacks. One year. $1.75M plus $1.05M in incentives.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) February 13, 2021
Free-agent infielder Brock Holt in agreement with Rangers on minor-league deal, source tells @TheAthletic. Can earn $1.75M in majors with $750K in incentives. Had major-league offers but chose Rangers because of opportunity at third base.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) February 12, 2021
Marcus Semien’s new backup? As if he needs one.
Infielder Joe Panik and the Toronto Blue Jays are in agreement on a minor league deal, a source tells ESPN. If he makes the team, he'll have a base salary of $1.85 million and can make another $400,000 in incentives.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 12, 2021
Second-most stolen bases by anyone named Billy Hamilton in MLB history
Billy Hamilton done deal with Indians. $1M if in majors, plus 950K incentives.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) February 13, 2021
And finally, another notable arbitration settlement
The Dodgers have avoided arbitration with RHP Walker Buehler, signing him to a two-year, $8M contract, a source tells @TheAthletic. The deal includes a $2M signing bonus, $2.75M salary in 2021 and $3.25M salary in ‘22.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) February 11, 2021
Best of Twitter
A’s family loses a championship member
We are saddened by the passing of Billy Conigliaro, a member of the A's 1973 World Series team. Our thoughts are with his family and friends during this time. pic.twitter.com/4SOX5WNRLq— Oakland A's (@Athletics) February 12, 2021
The A’s newly acquired
I mean what are the chances
It took a few years but the Oakland A's finally got Oklahoma's quarterback into their minor league system. It's not Kyler Murray but rather Cody Thomas, but hey, still counts. #Moneyball— Alex Hall (@AlexHallAN) February 12, 2021
Video of Nick Allen in the cage!
@nickallen10_ @Athletics— Coach Marcelino (@CoachMarcelino) February 11, 2021
#4 overall #athletics prospect
Feed the elbow drill:
We use the jr hack at the top of the zone and “feed the elbow”. Emphasis on flatter entry to the pitch up in the zone and a high connected turn. pic.twitter.com/fgfpIhCmAb
Interesting note on Benintendi
Benintendi admitted that during the ‘19 season when he had a career-high in strikeouts with the Sox, he was attempting to hit more homers and fell into bad habits. He feels he’s back to his normal self. Feels more athletic.— Julian McWilliams (@byJulianMack) February 11, 2021
Some of “Matt Chapman’s teammates” can probably relate to this feeling