A's notes: Cespedes wants to be in Home Run Derby

A's notes: Cespedes wants to be in Home Run Derby
May 28, 2013, 5:45 pm
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"It would be an honor to be at the All-Star Game and take part in the Home Run Derby." -- Yoenis Cespedes (USA TODAY IMAGES)

Programming note: Coverage of A's-Giants begins at 6:30 PT on CSN California with A's Pregame Live.

OAKLAND -- Yoenis Cespedes has one of the more violent, if pretty, swings in the game. This much is old news in the Bay Area.

So imagine the national pub the A's left fielder would receive if he participated in the Home Run Derby in New York during the All Star break, let alone won it.

And yes, Cespedes wants to participate.

"Quisiera," Cespedes said in Spanish on Tuesday. I wish.

"It would be an honor to be at the All-Star Game and take part in the Home Run Derby."

Of the five A's players to participate in the Derby -- Jose Canseco in 1986 and 1990, Mark McGwire in 1987, 1990,1992, 1996, 1997, Ruben Sierra in 1994, John Jaha in 1999 and Jason Giambi in 2001 -- only McGwire won it, in 1992.

A potential road block for Cespedes taking part at CitiField would be if he is not selected as an All-Star. His nine home runs lead the A's, despite his missing 14 games while on the disabled list with a left hand injury in April, but are not in the top 10 of the American League.

"If he is able to participate in the Home Run Derby, he'd have the possibility of putting on a show," said A's third baseman Josh Donaldson. "He hits the ball as far as anyone I've ever seen. It would be a good opportunity for him to be in that limelight, to let everyone see how far he can hit balls, and stuff like that."

***

Josh Reddick (sprained right wrist) was 1 for 3 with a single in six innings as the Class-A Stockton Ports' designated hitter in a rehab game Monday night, A's manager Bob Melvin said Tuesday.

Reddick will play in the field for triple-A Sacramento this evening and the plan is for him to return to DH duties Wednesday for the River Cats, followed by another DH stint on Thursday. If all goes well, the right fielder could return to the A's Friday for their series opener against the Chicago White Sox.

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With the A's playing in a National League park for interleague play on Wednesday with a two-game set against the Giants at AT&T Park, Oakland is using the injury suffered by Giants starter Ryan Vogelsong as a cautionary tale.

After all, Vogelsong fractured his right hand on a swing, and Vogelsong bats every time he pitches. The A's pitchers? Not so much as members of the DH-friendly American League.

"It's something we worry about," Melvin said. "National League guys have a routine."

The A's pitchers -- particularly Tommy Millone and A.J. Griffin, who will start the next two games in San Francisco -- have a routine as well, one that began with bunting, then slashing, followed by hit-and-run swings and ending with full swings.

***

Melvin, on the passing of Dr. Lewis Yocum from liver cancer, who was a consulting orthopedist for the A's since 1995: "There's probably not two or three guys medically that had the impact in the game of baseball. So it's a sad day."

The A's also issued a statement on Yocum, who was 65: "We are deeply saddened by the news of Dr. Yocum’s passing this past weekend. He has been both a leader and pioneer in the field of sports medicine and has had a profound influence on our sport. He has been a great friend and educator for athletic trainers everywhere, and we felt extremely thankful that the Oakland A’s had a formal relationship with him during the past 18 years. We will miss him greatly, both as a friend and a professional, and extend our deepest condolences to his wife Beth and their family."

Yocum was also the Los Angeles Angels team orthopedist for the past 36 years and was an associate at the Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic in Los Angeles.

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