Cahill, A's attempt to split series with Tigers

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Cahill, A's attempt to split series with Tigers

April 17, 2011A'S PAGE A'S VIDEO

(AP) -- Despite receiving excellent starting pitching all weekend, the Oakland Athletics need a win to salvage a split of their four-game home series with the Detroit Tigers.Trevor Cahill will be looking to extend the outstanding stretch by Oakland's rotation when he takes the mound Sunday afternoon.Athletics starting pitchers have yet to give up an earned run in this series - a feat which has lowered the rotation's ERA to a major league-best 2.25.After 12 2-3 scoreless innings by Gio Gonzalez and Brandon McCarthy went for naught in losses to Detroit on Thursday and Friday, Dallas Braden gave up one unearned run in five innings Saturday before leaving with stiffness in his pitching shoulder. Though his departure came early, Braden got credit for a 6-2 win over the Tigers (7-8).The loss of Braden aside, there were several positives for the Athletics (7-8). Oakland's struggling bullpen was effective, giving up one run and three hits in four innings, and the Athletics were able to overcome their major league-leading 17th error.Most importantly though, Oakland's offense appears to be improving. It has scored four or more runs in four of the last five games after averaging 3.1 in its first 10. David DeJesus and Hideki Matsui each had two of the A's nine hits Saturday, six of which went for extra bases."Our pitching staff's been doing their thing all year so we have to start scoring some runs for them," shortstop Cliff Pennington said. "You always want to win at home. Now we have to try to go out here (Sunday) and try to split this series."Cahill (1-0, 3.12 ERA) will try to bounce back from a poor start against the Chicago White Sox on Tuesday. The right-hander allowed four runs, six hits and three walks in 4 2-3 innings of a 6-5, 10-inning defeat. It was the second time in three starts this season he failed to make it out of the fifth."My bullpen before the game went unusually better than I expected," said Cahill, whose poor performance came one day after he signed a five-year, 30.5 million extension. "Usually I'm pretty bad in the bullpen, but today I was pretty good. I knew I was going to be struggling after that."Cahill is 1-1 with a 5.74 ERA in three starts against Detroit, but was effective in his only start against the Tigers last season, allowing one run and five hits in 6 1-3 innings of a 4-1 victory at Comerica Park.Detroit will look to bounce back after having its four-game winning streak snapped Saturday. The Tigers went 0 for 10 with runners in scoring position in the loss. They're batting .316 in RBI situations in their seven wins, compared with .136 in their losses."I don't mind if we don't execute but it looked to me like we didn't even recognize the situations," manager Jim Leyland said. "It was kind of shocking to me."Magglio Ordonez was 1 for 4 in his return to Detroit's lineup. He had been out since Monday with a tight right Achilles' tendon.While Detroit's offense tries for a better performance, Brad Penny (0-1, 8.27) looks to build off his most effective start of the season when he takes the mound Sunday.Penny gave up three runs and seven hits in 6 2-3 innings of a 5-4 win over Texas on Tuesday. The right-hander had allowed 12 runs over 9 2-3 innings in starts at New York and Baltimore.Penny has posted a 6.00 ERA while splitting two career starts against the Athletics, one in 2003 and the other in 2009.

Magic Johnson to run Lakers front office, Mitch Kupchak fired

Magic Johnson to run Lakers front office, Mitch Kupchak fired

LOS ANGELES -- Los Angeles Lakers Governor Jeanie Buss announced today that the team has named Earvin "Magic" Johnson as President of Basketball Operations. In addition, General Manager Mitch Kupchak has been relieved of his duties, effective immediately. Furthermore, Jim Buss will no longer hold his role as Lakers Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations.

"Today I took a series of actions I believe will return the Lakers to the heights Dr. Jerry Buss demanded and our fans rightly expect," Jeanie Buss said. "Effective immediately, Earvin Johnson will be in charge of all basketball operations and will report directly to me. Our search for a new General Manager to work with Earvin and Coach Luke Walton is well underway and we hope to announce a new General Manager in short order. Together, Earvin, Luke and our new General Manager will establish the foundation for the next generation of Los Angeles Lakers greatness."

"It's a dream come true to return to the Lakers as President of Basketball Operations working closely with Jeanie Buss and the Buss family," said Earvin "Magic" Johnson. "Since 1979, I've been a part of the Laker Nation and I'm passionate about this organization. I will do everything I can to build a winning culture on and off the court. We have a great coach in Luke Walton and good young players. We will work tirelessly to return our Los Angeles Lakers to NBA champions."

Jeanie Buss added, "I took these actions today to achieve one goal: Everyone associated with the Lakers will now be pulling in the same direction, the direction established by Earvin and myself. We are determined to get back to competing to win NBA championships again."

Regarding Mitch Kupchak, Jeanie Buss stated, "We are grateful for the many contributions Mitch has made to the Lakers over the years and we wish him all the best."

With regard to fellow owner and brother, Jim Buss, Ms. Buss said, "Jim loves the Lakers. Although he will no longer be responsible for basketball personnel decisions, he is an owner of this team and we share the same goal: returning the Lakers to the level of greatness our father demanded. Our fans deserve no less."

In addition to the changes made within the basketball department, the Lakers also announced they have parted ways with John Black who had been the Lakers Vice President of Public Relations. Chief Operating Officer Tim Harris will immediately begin a search for a replacement. Jeanie Buss added, "We thank John for his many years of service."

Los Angeles Lakers media services
 

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.