Callaspo to find a kindred spirit in Sogard

Melvin on Callaspo: 'This is a guy that can play everywhere'

Callaspo to find a kindred spirit in Sogard
July 30, 2013, 11:00 pm
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He's always been a hassle to us playing him, so it's great to have him playing on our side now.
Eric Sogard on Alberto Callaspo

OAKLAND -- Big league clubhouses are always a somewhat dour locale following a loss.

So even while it was far from happy time in the A's abode following their sleepwalking 5-0 defeat to Toronto on Tuesday night, there was a sense of curiosity in the air. The players had a new teammate on the way in Alberto Callaspo and the man likely most affected by the move was welcoming the trade with a smile and open arms.

[RELATED: A's acquire Callaspo from Angels]

"Great player," A's second baseman and new fan favorite Eric Sogard said of Callaspo.

"He's always been a hassle to us playing him, so it's great to have him playing on our side now. I think he's going to be a great fit in this clubhouse. From what I hear he's a great guy so I'm looking forward to it."

Callaspo, who will wear No. 18 for the A's, was acquired from the Los Angeles Angels during the game for minor league prospect Grant Green. And while Callaspo has played primarily third base for the Angels, the switch-hitter will split time at second with the left handed-hitting Sogard. Sogard will start against right-handers, Callaspo against lefties.

The A's thinking is that not only is Callaspo a better big league hitter now than Green, who went 0-for-15 with six strikeouts in five starts, all against lefties, but also a better utility infielder than Adam Rosales, who is most likely the corresponding roster move when Callaspo arrives.

As a regular third baseman the past two years -- Callaspo last played second in 2010 -- he can also give Josh Donaldson a breather at the hot corner. Donaldson has only missed two of the A's 106 games.

A's manager Bob Melvin had Callaspo in Arizona in 2006 and 2007 and likened the player to one of those "incremental" pieces that the A's could use, rather than a splashy high-profile acquisition.

"We acquired him to play everywhere," Melvin said. "He can split time with Sogie and give everyone else a breather."

Green could not do that. Not yet, anyway. And Rosales, as noted above, seems on his way out.

Indeed, the move seems to solidify Jed Lowrie as the everyday shortstop after playing second with Rosales spelling him at short.

"(Callaspo) will be a great addition for us to have, coming from our rival down south," said right fielder Josh Reddick.

Said Donaldson: "Any upgrade or anything that's going to help this team is good. He's going to have the opportunity to play multiple positions and, hopefully, help us out."

But it all comes back to Sogard, who had a good day despite not playing. A scoring change from the previous night changed an error to a hit, so now he has a career-high eight-game hitting streak.

And he knows a little something about playing all over the infield, too, having played second base, shortstop and third base in his four years in Oakland, so he feels what Callaspo is about to undertake.

"He has moved around a bit so I'm sure he'll be fine," Sogard said. "I mean, once you're a utility guy it's kind of always in your system so I'm sure he won't have a problem moving over there and getting comfortable again."

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