It’s the weekend, Athletics Nation!
With only a handful of spring games left, the A’s attentions are starting to turn toward Opening Day. When the Athletics start their season next Friday in Philadelphia, there is still some question as to who will fill out the roster and especially who will be on mound.
The lead of the A’s rotation isn’t as certain as the last few seasons. Chris Bassitt got the nod last year, but post-trade he’s now moving up the Mets’ rotation with Jacob deGrom injured. While Frankie Montas was the June opener for the abbreviated 2020 season, his return to Opening Day isn’t as certain in 2022.
Frankie Montas will pitch Sunday in a simulated game on the backfields while Sean Manaea pitches in the game against the Padres that day. That leaves both as possibilities to start Opening Day for the A’s.— Martín Gallegos (@MartinJGallegos) April 1, 2022
A’s manager Mark Kotsay has kept both Montas and Sean Manaea on what seem to be equal chances to be the Opening Day starter, with Montas being moved to the backfields to throw on the same day as Manaea. As discussed by Matt Kawahara in the San Francisco Chronicle, this gives Montas the chance to make sure he hits his inning and pitch goals for the spring without the uncertainty of an opposing team.
There is also the possibility that either starter could get dealt in the last week before the season, as trade rumours have abounded since the end of the lockout. Most notably, both A’s have been attached to the Twins and Yankees as trade targets, with Manaea being the more shopped pitcher. Manaea’s salary is set almost $5 million higher than Montas’ this year, and it is Sean’s last year under team control. This means that the salary shredding A’s of 2022 may want to hold onto the cheaper Montas until they can flip him next year as a rental. Of course being a trade deadline rental may be Manaea’s ultimate fate as an Athletic if he isn’t moved this coming week.
Look to see who the A’s Opening Day starter will be at the beginning of next week, after the results of both Manaea and Montas throwing on Sunday. Whichever pitcher doesn’t start the season’s first game on Friday will be set for the second game on Saturday.
The rest of the rotation is a bit tougher to predict with Brett Honeywell Jr. being shut down indefinitely and James Kaprielian out for the first month. The last three spots likely belong to some mix of: Cole Irvin in his second year with the team, Paul Blackburn who has been up and down for spot starts each of the last five years, Daulton Jefferies who showed up for the end of last season, or newbie Adam Oller. Earning his spot on the roster this spring after coming to the A’s in the Bassitt trade, Oller’s inclusion is extra exciting as it will be his major league debut after a long journey in the minors, the Australian league, and indie-ball.
- Hall: Who’s on first? Updated look at A’s 1B competition
- Hall: Adam Oller will make Opening Day roster
- Hall: A’s outright Grant Holmes to Triple-A
- Hall: Spring Game #14: A’s hit four dingers, thump White Sox
- Kawahara: Picking between Manaea and Montas, A’s keep Opening Day starter options open ($)
- Gallegos: New beginning: Oller makes first MLB roster after winding journey
- Thanawalla: Adam Oller making A’s roster might be ‘best day of my life’
- Crowley: Oakland A’s roster projection: Which new faces are in line for Opening Day jobs?
- Ravani: A’s hit with lawsuit over $12 billion Howard Terminal ballpark and development. Team calls it ‘absolutely crazy’ ($)
- Martin: Pache, Cusick top list of talented new A’s prospects
- Sheehan, Trujillo: Friday’s top Spring Training prospect performers (Kevin Smith, Denzel Clarke mentioned)
- McClatchy: Ex-A’s minor leaguer led illegal sports gambling ring
- Dubuque: Lowrie, Vogt Stay Rooted in Oakland ($)
- Lindbergh: Effectively Wild 2022 Division Preview Series: AL West (podcast)
- Jomboy: Oakland A’s Team Profile & Projections (video)
MLB News & Interest
- Rogers: MLB umpires to announce replay review decisions to fans
- Adams: MLB Umpires To Begin Announcing Replay Decisions
- Schoenfield: Expanded playoffs, the Ohtani rule, and a new team name! Everything that is different about MLB in 2022
- Drellich: Source: Yankees to appeal release of ‘Yankees Letter’ from 2017 detailing MLB’s sign stealing investigation ($)
- Seiner: Minor league housing plan freezing out players with families
- Callis, Mayo, Dykstra: Each team’s prospect to watch
- Polishuk: Jacob deGrom Shut Down For Four Weeks Due To Stress Reaction In Shoulder
- Clemens: Jacob deGrom: Both Sides Now
- Laurila: 2022 Positional Power Rankings: Designated Hitter
- Jaffe: 2022 Positional Power Rankings: Right Field
- Glaser: 20 Prospects Impressing MLB Scouts In Spring Training ($)
- Posnanski: Baseball and Blackouts
- Creamer: MLB Announces Jersey Ads in 2023, Helmet Ads in October
- Creamer: Minor League Baseball Launches Ten New Team Names, Logos for Copa in 2022
- Lukas: MiLB’s Copa de la Diversión Returns with 10 New Teams for 2022
- Lee: Ranking MLB’s City Connect uniforms
- Today in Baseball History
Best of Twitter
Deolis Guerra is out for the start of the season
One of two returning A’s relievers who pitched in more than a dozen games for them last season. https://t.co/j8xukfD11o— Matt Kawahara (@matthewkawahara) April 2, 2022
A lawsuit regarding the new ballpark was filed against the A’s by the East Oakland Stadium Alliance
Statement from East Oakland Stadium Alliance, who filed the lawsuit (among other groups) pic.twitter.com/aNxT45fiSb— Sarah Ravani (@SarRavani) April 2, 2022
Dave Kaval’s response to the lawsuit
From @DaveKaval: “If you look at the people who filed the suit, you have the largest polluters in probably the state using an environmental bill... to stop a project that is going to clean up the environment, improve air quality&provide access to the water. It’s absolutely crazy"— Sarah Ravani (@SarRavani) April 2, 2022
More with Kaval
Just caught up with @DaveKaval, which often happens when Howard Terminal news breaks. We are at the intersection of #BindingVoteSZN and #LawsuitSZN. Amazing times. Buckle up! pic.twitter.com/DypKROzchf— Casey Pratt (@CaseyPrattABC7) April 2, 2022
Jessica Kleinschmidt joins the A’s media team
A little goofiness with Manaea
Came for the questions— Oakland A's (@Athletics) April 1, 2022
Stayed for the singing
Manaea’s Mini Mic Minute ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/0Fo4TzZjdE
Oller’s path to the bigs
Adam Oller has made the Oakland A’s Opening Day roster.— Danny Vietti (@DannyVietti) April 1, 2022
He has quite a story:
• 20th-round pick
• released by Pirates
• worked 2 jobs every offseason
• Rule-5 draft pick
• played winter ball in Australia
• Indy Ball in 2019 pic.twitter.com/CfanwGXIS0
Liam is still Liam, whether he’s pitching for, or against the A’s
Liam Hendriks and his dislike of Walks.— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) April 1, 2022
Midseason form ✔️ pic.twitter.com/k0cgl6GZSs
Baseball is for everyone! Let Lily play!