Bob Melvin confirmed today that Brandon McCarthy will be the opening day starter for the Japan series (which takes place March, 28th & 29th), Bartolo Colon will pitch the second night.
Just last spring McCarthy was fighting for the 5th spot in the rotation, so it’s safe to say he’s come a long way since then and he has more than proved himself deserving of the opening day nod.
David Forst addressed the third baseman situation on Tuesday morning and it sounds like the A’s are really considering looking outside the organization to fill the void:
“This is definitely an opportunity for [Donaldson] but at the same time, we definitely need to do our due diligence and see what else is out there on the market to make sure we can give Bob [Melvin] the best team that we can,” Oakland assistant general manager David Forst said. “Typically, you don’t see deals getting made the first week of March because teams spent all offseason putting a team together and they want to see what they have, at least for a little bit. It’s not a time that most teams are really willing to engage, but they obviously know we have a need.”
If you’re curious who the A’s might look at, Tim Dierkes of MLBtraderumors.com gave his opinion of who he thinks the A’s might target.
One other note I found interesting was when asked about Grant Green being a possible starter at third base, Melvin quickly shot it down saying the plan is to keep him in the outfield.
Remember that Green was a former shortstop, but was converted into a centerfielder last season. The A’s currently have a heavy load in the outfield, specifically center, with Coco Crisp signed to a 2-year deal and Yoenis Cespedes due to sign a 4-year deal any day now. It will be interesting to see what the A’s do with Green in the long run, I believe it’s possible the A’s may look to trade him down the road.
There is some good news regarding injuries, Susan Slusser reports (via twitter) that after yesterday’s bullpen session Dallas Braden has been cleared to to start throwing “more regular” sessions, similar to those of normal starters.
Joe Stiglich believes the A’s will have Graham Godfrey starting Friday against the Mariners, with Tom Milone following.