Melvin won't limit Anderson in Game 3 start

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Melvin won't limit Anderson in Game 3 start

OAKLAND After starting rookies in each of the first two games of theirAmerican League Division Series against the Detroit Tigers, the As have thebenefit of veteran-by-comparison Brett Anderson starting a must-win Game 3. This series is kind of like a microcosm of our season,Anderson said Monday. Youve got two rookies and a guy thats been hurt 90percent of the season. This team has handled adversity better than any teamIve seen, so you wouldnt expect anything less.Anderson is coming off a right oblique strain sustained in astart on Sept. 19 at Detroit. The As 24-year-old lefty allowed three runs in2.1 innings in that start and is 2-2 with a 3.78 ERA in four appearancesagainst the Tigers.While Jonny Gomes joked that the As Game 3 starter ruins the rookierotation, its clear that Andersons teammates have plenty of faith in him, aslong as hes healthy enough to compete.I dont know how he feels, but he says he feels good, closerGrant Balfour said. He has great stuff. Hes going to go out there and do agreat job for us Im sure.As manager Bob Melvin said he doesnt plan on babysittingAnderson, despite the layoff from the oblique injury coming soon after an evenlonger absence from the game following Tommy John surgery.Not too many limitations, Melvin said. I dont think were going to doanything as far as his pitch count goes. Were just going to see every inninghow he feels and monitor that. Adrenaline kicks in and sometimes you have morein the tank than you normally would after a little bit of time off.
ENTEEN: A's won't change approach heading in to must-win game
Just like in his mid-season debut, Anderson wont get thebenefit of a meaningless game to get his groove back. Anderson made his 2012debut on August 21 and allowed just one run in seven innings as the As were inthe thick of a playoff push. Now, Anderson takes the ball in an eliminationgame against a tough Tigers lineup.So what does Anderson expect from himself?Just continue to do what our starters have done the first two games, Andersonsaid. Theyve given us a chance to win. I like the way that Ive been playing.Were down 0-2. We won three games in a row against the Rangers and I dont seewhy we cant do it again.For the As to shock the baseball world (again) Anderson will have to find away to quiet the bat of Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera, who is hitting .375with two doubles this postseason.Ive got to keep guys off base in front of Cabrera,Anderson said. Youve got to go out and execute pitches and get him out justlike everybody else.
RATTO: A's philosophy -- 'Why the hell not?'
Tigers manager Jim Leyland said Monday that he plans to usethe same starting lineup he did Sunday against Tommy Milone, so Anderson knowswho the everybody else is that he will face.
Unfortunately for the As,everybody else has moderate success against him. Including Cabreras 3-for-7history, the Tigers projected Game 3 lineup is 11-for-39 (.282) with threedoubles, five RBI, five walks and six strikeouts against Anderson. ForAnderson, all that matters is the chance to make the first postseason start ofhis career, even if hes not 100 healthy.I feel good and the postseason, who knows when were goingto get back here, Anderson said. Youd like to say youre going to get backhere again. But you have to put the knicks and knacks away and get ready toplay, because everybody has them at this point.Anderson admitted that his velocity hasnt fully returned topre-surgery levels, but hopes he can still help Melvin by staying on theColiseum mound as long as possible.My bullpens have been strong, Anderson said. Its a Catch 22 I took sometime off with my oblique, so my arm feels good. Well let the game dictate whathappens, but hopefully Im out there for awhile.

Kaval: A's must 'swing for the fences' in choosing ballpark site

Kaval: A's must 'swing for the fences' in choosing ballpark site

MESA, Ariz. — After spending a few days at spring training, A’s president Dave Kaval heads back to the Bay Area on Tuesday to continue work on the team’s search for a ballpark site.

There are so many factors to consider — location, public transportation access, parking, government obligations to be fulfilled, etc. — it’s easy to understand why it’s such an all-encompassing process.

Kaval shared some detailed thoughts on all of the potential sites the A’s are considering during a visit on the A’s Insider Podcast. Here’s some highlights:

The A’s have narrowed down to four locations in Oakland to build a privately financed ballpark: Brooklyn Basin, Howard Terminal, Laney College and the current Coliseum site on which they play.

Are these four all uniquely different from each other or do they share some common traits?

“I think all of them can fulfill our long-term vision of this urban area around the ballpark,” Kaval said. “Think of Fenway, Wrigley … all of them can achieve that vision. We want to make sure with such a big decision that we swing for the fences. … I think the Coliseum is probably the hardest to create kind of an urban village, but I think it’s possible, and we’re not ruling it out.

"But all the other locations can have neighborhoods around the ballpark where people can live and you can just have a really intimate experience around the ballpark.”

There hasn’t been the same buzz about Brooklyn Basin as Howard Terminal. Located close to the water, does it offer similar attributes as Howard Terminal?

“It’s very close. There’s a couple different places the ballpark could go down there,” he said. “You’re closer to the water, which is exciting, and I think being on the water provides the ability to have water taxis, ferries, other transit options that kind of lower the requirement for parking, lower the requirement for walking or biking. And that actually can be a really great thing for the fan experience.”

Howard Terminal offers a big potential payoff with the terrific views available. But there are some substantial hurdles, not the least of which are the government regulations and approvals required to build right along the water.

“If you want to actually develop something in there, you need to have legislation from the state of California. That’s just something that has to happen,” Kaval said. “So when we think about the steps to get the individual sites (approved) and break ground, it’s just another one you have to do at that site. So you have to weigh, is it worth the time, effort, political opposition that might come up to pursue that type of effort? The site is so iconic that we’ve been keeping it in the mix because, wow, it could just be something that is a game changer.”

That’s just a sample of the many topics Kaval touched on over the course of the podcast.

A's spring training Day 7: Rosales readies himself everywhere

A's spring training Day 7: Rosales readies himself everywhere

MESA, Ariz. — Adam Rosales has a real simple plan for which infield position he chooses to try to get work at.

“Wherever there’s less guys, I go over there,” he explained with a smile.

The sun came out and the A’s finally got on the field for their first full-squad workout Monday after being rained out Sunday. That meant Rosales, back for his second go-round as an Athletic, got his first chance to prepare for what figures to be a super-utility role, which is how he’s carved out a nine-year major league career.

All indications are that he’ll be the primary backup infielder, capable of spelling Jed Lowrie at second base, Marcus Semien at shortstop, Trevor Plouffe at third and even fill in at first base or left field in a pinch.

Though Rosales, who spent 2010-12 with Oakland and re-signed in January on a one-year $1.25 million deal, is well-versed in preparing himself all over the diamond, one position in particular is one that he says is most difficult to master in limited time.

“Shortstop,” he offered without hesitation. “There’s a lot more going on there, a lot less room for error. At shortstop, especially with a guy like Mike Trout running, you’ve got to be in good rhythm, good timing, get rid of the ball and make an accurate throw.”

Depending on how the A’s prioritize their 25-man roster, Rosales could very well be the only backup infielder. That means fellow infielders Joey Wendle and Chad Pinder would start in the minors if the A’s were to keep a fifth outfielder or third catcher. But because the A’s have some players who can fill in at multiple spots, there’s numerous ways they can choose to configure the roster when it comes time to pare it down.

Rosales, 33, said walking back into the A’s clubhouse for the first time made him “feel like I’m back home.” So much of the support staff — equipment guys, clubhouse guys — are the same as when he was here before. He was also happy to see former infield mate Mark Ellis walk through the door Sunday. He says Ellis, a teammate from 2010-11, instilled in him the importance of being a great defender. Ellis is working as a part-time spring instructor.

“He told me, the No. 1 reason he was in the big leagues was because of this,” Rosales said, holding up his glove. “I was such a young player then. I’d always work with him, how to turn double plays. Just to have him around is awesome.”

NOTEWORTHY: Sonny Gray and Kendall Graveman were among the pitchers who faced hitters for the first time this season. Bruce Maxwell caught Gray, his first time behind the plate with Gray other than the one inning Gray threw in an abbreviated start at Anaheim toward the end of last season. Maxwell said Gray’s changeup in particular looked good.

Manager Bob Melvin has been very impressed early on with Graveman’s command. Graveman said he’s trying to improve his changeup, in an effort to induce weak contact from righties and get them on the their front foot, which could then make him more effective on the inside corner.

CAMP BATTLE: There could be a good fight for the seventh and final spot in the bullpen, and it would seem being left-handed could give someone an edge. Sean Doolittle is the only lefty currently projected among the A’s top six relievers. Melvin had good things to say about Daniel Coulombe, a lefty who made 35 appearances in relief last year and also saw a bit of time with Oakland in 2015. Coulombe posted a 4.53 ERA last season but struck out 54 in 47 2/3 innings.