A's pull away, get 6-2 win against Detroit

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A's pull away, get 6-2 win against Detroit

April 16, 2011BOXSCORE A'SVIDEOMLBPAGE MLBSCOREBOARD

OAKLAND (AP) Dallas Braden helped pitch the Athletics to their second home win of the season, but it might have come at a price.Braden combined with four relievers on a six-hitter but had to leave early in Oakland's 6-2 victory over the Detroit Tiger on Saturday night after complaining of tightness in his left shoulder.A's manager Bob Geren said that Braden, who threw a perfect game on Mother's Day in 2010, would undergo further evaluation. The pitcher was terse when asked about his health afterward."Shoulder stiff," Braden responded coldly before repeating himself. "Shoulder was stiff. I couldn't continue. Show up tomorrow, we'll evaluate then."Braden's health was the only dark lining on an otherwise solid day for the A's, who dropped the first two games on this homestand before knocking around Detroit ace Justin Verlander.David DeJesus and Hideki Matsui had two hits apiece as Oakland smacked six doubles, five against Verlander (1-2).The A's also overcame their major league-leading 17th error to win for the second time in six games at the Coliseum this season. They ended Detroit's four-game winning streak."Our pitching staff's been doing their thing all year so we have to start scoring some runs for them," Oakland shortstop Cliff Pennington said. "You always want to win at home. Now we have to try to go out here tomorrow and try to split this series."Braden wasn't as crisp as he has been this season and had to pitch out of jams in the second and fourth.Coming off six sharp innings against the Chicago White Sox on Monday, Braden (1-1) struck out five and walked two. He left after five innings and only 67 pitches when his shoulder tightened up."He was throwing the ball well that inning, then started going to his changeup a lot more," Geren said. "That gave you the indication that maybe he didn't want to use his fastball for one reason or the other."Braden said he knew he couldn't continue after the fifth. That put the game in the hands of Oakland's bullpen, which had come under scrutiny after failing to support strong outings by starters Gio Gonzalez and Brandon McCarthy in the first two games of this four-game series.This time, the relievers didn't give in.Brad Ziegler, Craig Breslow, Grant Balfour and Brian Fuentes pitched one inning apiece to complete the six-hitter.Oakland needed the strong outing to help overcome a throwing error by first baseman Daric Barton that gave the Tigers a 1-0 lead.It was the A's eighth error in their past five games. Fortunately for Oakland, the offense got to Verlander in the fourth.DeJesus, Josh Willingham and Matsui hit consecutive doubles to open the inning and give the A's a 2-1 lead. Kurt Suzuki followed with a single and when left fielder Ryan Raburn bobbled the ball for an error, Matsui raced around third to score.The game took a quirky turn in the bottom of the fifth.Verlander walked Barton, then was on the mound when he suddenly jumped off the rubber and fired toward the plate. The ball hit DeJesus in the foot and he was initially awarded first base while Barton moved to second.Detroit manager Jim Leyland came out to question the call, and after the four umpires conferred, the play was ruled a balk. DeJesus was sent back to the box and Barton remained at second.Verlander explained that he was trying to make a pickoff throw to first base but his body was caught out of position, so he thought if he just threw home he could avoid a balk."I saw the video of it and I couldn't help but laugh at myself," Verlander said. "It might be the first time it happened in general. I thought nothing could happen at the plate. It was funny talking to the umpires. They gave me a hard time about it, too."Verlander got out of the jam but was gone an inning later after an RBI double by Coco Crisp. The right-hander allowed eight hits and four runs - three earned - in six innings, finishing with six strikeouts.Oakland scored a pair of insurance runs in the eighth off reliever Enrique Gonzalez. Detroit then loaded the bases in the ninth and scored one run before Fuentes retired the final two batters.Designated hitter Magglio Ordonez went 1 for 4 in his return to Detroit's lineup. He had been out since Monday with a tight Achilles' in his right foot.NOTES: The Tigers have doubled in all 15 games this year, the franchise's longest streak to start a season since at least 1919. ... Verlander needs eight strikeouts to reach 1,000 for his career. ... Leyland said he plans to give 3B Brandon Inge the day off Sunday. ... The seven runs scored by Detroit in the 10th inning Friday were the most the Tigers have scored in extra innings since 1991. ... Barton's error was his fifth this year. The first baseman had 10 total in 2010. ... Oakland had not hit three consecutive doubles in one inning since Sept. 5, 2009, against Seattle. ... A's RHP Michael Wuertz got knocked around during a rehab assignment with Class-A Stockton. Wuertz, on the disabled list with a hamstring strain, started and gave up three runs and four hits in one inning.

Mailbag: How would Raiders' move affect A's ballpark search?

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Mailbag: How would Raiders' move affect A's ballpark search?

GLENDALE, Ariz. — With one week to go until the A’s break camp and head north, there are still some roster issues to be cleared up.

The big-picture question regarding this team, obviously, is where it might be building a future ballpark.

With all this in mind, we try to provide some clarity on questions submitted via Twitter:

From @Cjkittrell: If the Raiders move to Vegas, does the Coliseum site jump to the top of the list of possible ballpark sites by default?

That’s not necessarily the case. You have to remember what the A’s crave more than anything in a ballpark location: A thriving surrounding area — with restaurants, bars, shops, etc. — that will make the ballpark an attraction beyond the baseball game itself. Team president Dave Kaval has talked of wanting a “ballpark village” around a new venue. A downside of the Coliseum is that there is nothing around the area right now that would attract fans besides the baseball. Other sites, including Howard Terminal, appear to have more potential as far as surrounding attractions.

This doesn’t count out the Coliseum as an option. As Kaval has said, it’s the only site of four being considered that the A’s know is truly viable. There’s comfort in that. And the BART station, freeway access and available parking are big plusses. But something else I’ll mention in regard to the Raiders: Even if they announce a move to Las Vegas, they have lease agreements that would keep them playing football at the Coliseum at least through the 2018 season while their Vegas stadium is under construction. With the Raiders likely to be on the property for that period, it could complicate the A’s own hypothetical construction plans for the Coliseum site.

From @44BWells: With the emergence of Franklin Barrreto and the contract of Jed Lowrie, what's Joey Wendle's present and future?

They appear murky, don’t they? First and foremost, Wendle has to recover from a sore right shoulder that’s kept him out of exhibitions for a while. But the acquisition of utility man Adam Rosales meant Wendle probably wasn’t going to make the club out of spring training anyway. He’s got a fan in manager Bob Melvin, who was impressed with Wendle defensively last September. It was Wendle’s glove that was the question mark when he arrived from the Cleveland Indians. Barreto has the star-caliber upside and the hype. Once the A’s deem him ready, Lowrie becomes a trade possibility. But Wendle’s advantage is that, to a degree, he’s already proven himself in the majors. He’s a known quantity at this level. If a second baseman is needed early in the season, Wendle could get a call-up before Barreto if Barreto gets off to a slow start.

As for Wendle’s future beyond 2017, it would serve him well to be able to handle as many positions as possible. He realizes this. That’s why he volunteered to play winter ball in Mexico this past offseason, where he played lots of shortstop. His role moving forward could be as more of a utility guy, because I see Barreto growing roots at second base.

@ONChristy: Do the A's have the pieces, both in the majors and minors, to make a run in 2018-2020?

Well, it’s definitely tough to look down the road and forecast a three-year block. Here’s a short answer for you: They better! All of the trades of the past couple seasons have been made with an eye toward stockpiling young talent — especially on the pitching side. Contending this year will be a tall order. But by the end of this season, I’d expect Barreto and third baseman Matt Chapman to have gotten their feet wet in the big leagues. There’s a strong chance you’ll also see young pitchers such as Frankie Montas and Daniel Gossett up. There’s a large core of young players who are on the cusp of being major league ready.

Add to that some core veterans such as Khris Davis, Kendall Graveman Marcus Semien and (if he’s not traded) Sonny Gray— who will all be under team control through 2019 at least — and the A’s have a solid foundation for contending in that timeframe you mention. But let’s face it, there’s a lot that can and usually does happen over any three-year span that completely changes what we think we know going in.

Week after signing with Vikings, ex-Raiders RB Murray undergoes surgery

Week after signing with Vikings, ex-Raiders RB Murray undergoes surgery

A week after signing a deal with the Vikings, former Raiders running back Latavius Murray has undergone ankle surgery.

The Vikings made the announcement Wednesday afternoon.

Minnesota issued the following statement regarding the surgery:

"Vikings RB Latavius Murray had successful ankle surgery today. The surgery was performed by Dr. Bob Anderson in Charlotte, North Carolina. We were aware of the required surgery prior to signing Latavius on March 16. Latavius is expected to fully recover and be available for training camp."

Murray's deal with the Vikings is reported worth $15 million over three years, but can reportedly be voied after the first year.

Drafted in the sixth round of the 2013 NFL Draft, Murray became the Raiders' primary running back midway through the 2015 season. In his three years in Oakland, Murray carried the ball 543 times for 2,278 yards and 12 touchdowns. He was named to the Pro Bowl in 2015.