It’s a great weekend, Athletics Nation!
We are on our way to spring training! The A’s have opened up their Arizona camp as of Friday and some players have already arrived, with a mandatory report date of March 13 for all players. This is ahead of the team’s first spring training game March 18, and Opening Day on April 8.
As the gears start turning and training camp has begun picking up, some tidbits have already begun spilling out of Hohokam Stadium, many coming from A’s first year manager Mark Kotsay. The new skipper has only been able to contact his players for less than 48 hours at this point. While Kotsay was part of previous A’s manager Bob Melvin’s coaching staff for the last six seasons and has a rapport with the players over that span, his appointment to the role of manager happened during the lockout, meaning he was barred from reaching out to any of his roster.
Now that the CBA is signed and the lines are open, who was his first call? Matt Olson, of course. The A’s slugging first baseman is embroiled in possible trade talks as the team is reportedly looking to shed some payroll, and Olson could fetch a prized return. To Kotsay, reaching out to Olson first makes sense, as the manager is focused on gearing his guys up for the season and keeping trade rumours to the peripheries.
Some other scoops from the skip include some potential issues and hangups regarding the roster. First, while Sunday marks the mandatory report date to Arizona, outfield prospect Luis Barrera and pitching prospect Wandisson Charles will miss that date due to visa complications.
In addition to late spring arrivals, the A’s third series of the regular season is in Toronto, and according to both border restrictions and the freshly signed CBA, all players entering Canada require full vaccination. While Kotsay can vouch for the coaches, the vaccination status of all A’s players hasn’t yet been confirmed. Any player who can’t make it to the games against the Jays will be temporarily placed on the Restricted List for the series and will meet back up with the team in Oakland.
Lastly, for the players that have already arrived in Arizona (some from the minors camps running since late February, some just quick to arrive post-lockout) some pitchers have already started throwing bullpens, and Kotsay complimented pitchers A.J. Puk and Brent Honeywell. Other players to keep in mind are outfielder Ramon Laureano, who is available for spring training before finishing his suspension for the first 27 games of the regular season; and shortstop Elvis Andrus, who is just finishing recovery from a surgery last autumn.
- Eckalbar: The new CBA: Some small wins for the MLBPA and a big win for the A’s
- Hall: Spring training schedule update: A’s open Cactus League on March 18
- Hall: Opening Day: A’s will open season on April 8 in Philadelphia
- Hall: Video: A’s prospects playing baseball at spring training!
- Shea: New spring training details with revised Giants, A’s schedules
- Athletics: A’s announce 23 non-roster invitees
- Kawahara: A’s schedule for April an early test ($)
- Gallegos: ‘We play to win’: Kotsay looking to compete in first managerial season
- Kawahara: A’s Mark Kotsay tunes out trade rumours in readying for spring training ($)
- Adams: Braves, Rangers, Yankees Interested In Matt Olson
- Zucker: Matt Olson Reade Rumors: Yankees ‘Not Close’ to Deal for A’s 1B Due to Asking Price
- Gallegos: Recapping A’s offseason moves, roster FAQs
- McDonald: Multiple Teams Showed Pre-Lockout Interest In J.D. Davis (A’s trade candidate if Chapman gets moved)
- Gallegos: Criswell healthy and ready to get career back on track
- Kawahara: Prospects Tyler Soderstrom, Zach Gelof among non-roster invitees to A’s major-league camp ($)
- Gallegos: 5 questions A’s must answer before Opening Day
- McCauley: Minor league FA Vogt holds out on deal in union solidarity
- Hartlaub: BART is adopting out old cars. Here’s what people are doing with them ($) (A’s looking to grab a train car for a bar in the Coliseum)
MLB News & Interest
- Brown: With MLB Lockout Over, Here Are All The Details Of New 2022-26 Labour Deal
- Stark: Everything you need to know about the many MLB schedule changes in 2022 and 2023 ($)
- Schoenfield: Rankings and predictions for the top remaining MLB free agents
- Drellich: How MLB players won, and why it feels like they could have won more ($)
- Rogers: Rob Manfred speaks on MLB lockout, new CBA: ‘I felt a great weight’
- Athletic: Tony Clark, bruce Meyer address ‘difficult’ negotiations after MLB and players agree to CBA ($)
- Rosenthal: Rob Manfred needs to build a partnership with the players — with his actions and his words ($)
- Polishuk: MLB Gains Flexibility To Set Trade Deadline Between July 28-August 3
- Stark: How wills baseball’s new labour deal work? A look into the future: luxury tax, expanded playoffs, draft lottery, more ($)
- Clemens: Eliminating the Qualifying Offer Isn’t Worth Much
- AP: MLB, players’ union resume drug testing after lockout ends
- Mcwilliam: Report: Unvaxxed players not allowed to play games in Toronto
- Shusterman: MLB Tiers: Where Every Team Stands As The Hot Stove Reheats
- AP: Memo indicates home run derby could decide All-Star Game winner instead of extra innings
- Petriello: Every possible landing spot for Freeman, ranked
- Creamer: 2022 Spring Training Logos and Caps
- Lukas: 10 Ways the New Labour Deal Will Affect MLB Uniforms
- Today in Baseball History
Best of Twitter
The spring clubhouse is in ship-shape!
We are ready! pic.twitter.com/Sn1zuAHZRC— Steve Vucinich (@stevevuc) March 11, 2022
With players limited to 5 options per season, and a short Spring Training, larger rosters for the first month of play will help a lot
MLB still is trying to determine whether rosters will be expanded by 2 or 3 players in April.— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) March 11, 2022
A classic Milton Bradley feat
10/11/2006: Milton Bradley hit homers from both sides of the plate during Game 2 of the ALCS, making him the third player to do it in #postseason history. #Athletics #RootedInOakland (via MLB @athleticsnation @KleinschmidtJD pic.twitter.com/PLLsmhikl4— MLB Daily Dingers (@MLBDailyDingers) March 11, 2022
Where you might catch Kotsay grabbing a bite around The Town
Weekend dinner recs ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/qG57z0a28N— Oakland A's (@Athletics) March 12, 2022
On top of it all, the skip is a cover model!
A's always put out one of the best media guides and media guide covers. This year, there are obvious reasons no player is on the cover. It was an easy call to acknowledge the new manager. pic.twitter.com/eQSVw1sZdM— John Shea (@JohnSheaHey) March 11, 2022
Some things never change, like Liam Hendriks
Baseball is back pic.twitter.com/1ZMjb44EJX— James Fegan (@JRFegan) March 11, 2022
Wow, the fine print of the CBA gets crazy
I have been asked by MLB to negotiate the final deal between the owners and players, see below for the final demands I have added pic.twitter.com/FtbvouGd9L— ℳatt (@matttomic) March 11, 2022