PHOENIX – After a short-lived experiment with Twitter last season, Oakland A’s manager Bob Melvin is giving the social media app another try. This time he seems to be embracing it.
At this point, Melvin hasn’t sent out any tweets. He’s just following people and reading what they have to say.
“I’m not tweeting anything, just following … Including you people,” Melvin said in a light-hearted threat to A’s beat writers. “I saw Gibby (Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson) tweeted one tweet. Until he gets out there in double digits, I’ll hold back.”
He wasn’t volunteering his Twitter handle, but he said people could find him if they looked hard enough. He also boasted that he was following 28 people as of Sunday morning, including Warriors coach Mark Jackson.
Getting all Twitter-savvy also allows Melvin to monitor his players' accounts should he desire. He said he’s following about 10 of them.
Is he annoyed by anything he sees reporters tweet?
“It’s more the players that annoy me more than anything else,” he said. “Some of this stuff I don’t even wanna see what they’re doing.”
Melvin got a chance to watch recently acquired pitcher Drew Pomeranz throw to hitters Sunday and came away impressed.
Oakland got Pomeranz from Colorado as part of the Brett Anderson trade. The fifth overall pick in the 2010 draft by Cleveland, Pomeranz has yet to find much success in the major leagues. But he’s a 6-foot-5 left-hander who throws hard, and the A’s believe he still has lots of upside.
“You can see why he was drafted where he was, and how the expectations are so high,” Melvin said. “It’s all about throwing strikes with him.”
First baseman Daric Barton is one of a few A’s players that bulked up over the offseason. Barton says he put on about 10 pounds. He says he was healthier this offseason than in the past, which allowed him to work out harder.
“My legs feel better, stronger,” Barton said.
As always seems to be the case, Barton is in roster limbo with Oakland. Brandon Moss is the primary first baseman, and depending on how the A’s roster shakes out, Moss might be the only true first baseman who breaks camp with the team.
Barton is also out of options, meaning the A’s must put him through waivers – where he could be claimed by another team – before they could send him to the minor leagues.
“I’m glad I’m still with this team, and I’m going ot have fun this spring training,” Barton said. “ I know I did all the preparation I could do. I’m glad I’m here and things are gonna end up where they end up.”