Cahill strong for four innings, A's beat Padres

406171.jpg

Cahill strong for four innings, A's beat Padres

March 8, 2011BOXSCORE A'S POSTGAMEVIDEOMLBPAGE MLBSCOREBOARD
PHOENIX (AP) Oakland manager Bob Geren is looking for an opening-day starter, and Trevor Cahill is making quite the case for the job.Cahill pitched four scoreless innings in the Athletics' 6-2 win over the San Diego Padres on Tuesday."I was able to get some kind of rhythm going," Cahill said. "I threw sinkers away from both right- and left-handed hitters and threw a few changeups in there. I'm also getting better command of my fastball."The right-hander, who turned 23 on March 1, allowed one hit with no walks or strikeouts. He threw 49 pitches, then went to the bullpen for 15 more."He threw outstanding," Geren said. "He had a low pitch count. He is right where we want for him to be."Cahill also showed his agility when he dodged the barrel of Jesus Guzman's broken bat in the fourth inning."That shrapnel ... I was hoping there weren't any other pieces that I didn't see," Cahill said.Left-handers Gio Gonzalez, Dallas Braden and Brett Anderson also are in the mix to start April 1 against Seattle, but Cahill went 18-8 with a 2.97 ERA last season and made the All-Star team."Trevor has pitched well, Gio has been lights-out, Braden has pitched an opener before and Anderson has great stuff," Geren said. "It's good to have those kinds of options."Cahill even showed his agility Tuesday when he dodged the barrel of Jesus Guzman's broken bat in the fourth inning.Infielder Andy LaRoche also had a nice day for Oakland. LaRoche, in camp on a minor league contract, hit his second homer in as many games and No. 3 for the spring. He also had an infield hit and made a few nice defensive plays while playing all nine innings at first base.
RATTO: LaRoche finding new home in Oakland
"We knew that coming in that he had power potential," Geren said. "We are just trying him everywhere."Tim Stauffer struck out five in four innings for San Diego, yielding two unearned runs and two hits."He changed speeds well, he had good sink on his pitches," Padres manager Bud Black said. "We had him go four today, probably a little longer next time out."NOTES: Anthony Recker and Michael Taylor also homered for the A's. ... Oakland RHP Brad Ziegler continues to pitch well. He struck out three in the seventh to pick up the win. ... Oakland's Ryan Sweeney is scheduled to make his first start in right field on Wednesday against Texas after having season-ending surgery on his right knee on July 30.

Lynch, Shanahan hold 'positive' discussion with Kaepernick

Lynch, Shanahan hold 'positive' discussion with Kaepernick

General manager John Lynch confirmed during a radio interview that he and 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan met with quarterback Colin Kaepernick at his office Wednesday morning at the team headquarters in Santa Clara.

“I would characterize it as just a really positive discussion,” Lynch said during an appearance on KNBR, confirming a CSNBayArea.com report the sides met for the first time since Lynch and Shanahan were hired in their new roles.

Lynch said he and Shanahan have committed to being completely honest with Kaepernick, who can opt out of his contract to become an unrestricted free agent as early as next week.

Lynch did not divulge the topics of conversation. He said a commitment was also made to Kaepernick to not speak publicly about the specifics of their conversations.

“I do think that there are some things that are sacred,” Lynch said. “We did have a great discussion and I think Colin left excited and we left excited.

“And I think as Kyle and I believe, the evaluation process is still very much fluid. We’ve only been on the job a couple of weeks and I can tell you we both very much enjoyed being around Colin, and he seems like he’s in a real good place.”

Giants spring training Day 10: Bochy on board with new rules

Giants spring training Day 10: Bochy on board with new rules

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — During his season managing Barry Bonds, Bruce Bochy watched the slugger get intentionally walked 43 times. 

“There were (managers) who had the (signal) up before he even got to the batter’s box,” Bochy said Wednesday. 

That’s part of the reason Bochy is completely on board with a new rule stating that managers only have to signal for an intentional walk. The elimination of the four pitches has been approved by MLB and the MLBPA, with the caveat that a manager can change his mind in the middle of the plate appearance. 

“I’m fine with it,” Bochy said. “I know a few pitchers are happy because they kind of have a thing about throwing (those pitches), not on our team, but last year it happened to us and we didn’t go. I’m fine with it.”

It’s rare that an intentional ball would go to the backstop, but the Giants experienced it last year against the Yankees. Dellin Betances threw wide as he tried to put Brandon Crawford on and Angel Pagan didn’t react quickly enough to score from third. 

Bochy met with league officials last week to go over some of the new rules and ideas, and he said he wants MLB to keep pushing to cut the time of games. 

“We talk about it so much but we really haven’t done a lot,” Bochy said. “I’m all for (limiting mound visits). I’m all for it, I am. It’s gotten more and more popular in the game. It used to be the catcher, and now it’s the catcher and infielders, and they go to the mound and come back and then the pitching coach goes out there.”

EXHIBITION SCHEDULE: Bochy said Madison Bumgarner is currently slated to start Friday’s Cactus League opener, with Matt Cain also throwing an inning. Ty Blach will start Saturday, Matt Moore and Tyler Beede will pitch Sunday, and Jeff Samardzija will start Monday. It’s possible that 18 or 20 different pitchers will take the mound over the first two days since almost all of them will be scheduled for just three outs. With the exception of Will Smith, every projected Giant should see the field this weekend. Hunter Pence is the only guy who has been held back at all, but his intercostal issue has cleared up. Pence put several on the left-field berm during BP on Wednesday.

“Hunter wants to (play Friday). He's ready to go,” Bochy said. “I’ll make that call tomorrow once I talk to the staff, but Hunter assured me he’s a full go with no limitations, and he really wants to play.”

PROSPECT WATCH: Bochy took the van over to the minor league facility to watch some of the projected Triple-A players take part in live BP. Jae-gyun Hwang hit a homer off Jose Dominguez during his session. 

“He’s a guy that rotates (well) and he’s got good power,” Bochy said. “He can go the other way. He’s got some bat control. He’s got a nice swing.”

Over on the main field, Gorkys Hernandez hit an impressive homer to left-center. 

ICYMI: From this morning, Smith is being held out of workouts. Reporters spoke to him in the afternoon and he said there’s no concern. Also, here’s a podcast with Derek Law and Josh Osich. Subscribe on iTunes if you haven’t … there’s a very popular Giant coming soon.

QUOTABLE: Smith missed time last season because he tore a knee ligament while taking his shoe off, so this spring’s speed bump is somewhat easier to take. He had a message for the trainers: “I said I’m going to sit down every day this spring,” when I take my shoes off.