Moneyball mojo rubs off on 2012 A's


Moneyball mojo rubs off on 2012 A's

OAKLAND -- Scott Hatteberg bobble heads, "There is an A in streak" shirts, "The Voice of God" Roy Steele's return, the Fear Mecir sign back in left field, Moneyball on the diamond, oh -- and a win streak. It's starting to feel like 2002 all over again. The A's are once again a season-high tying 10 games over .500 (65-55). After sweeping the Cleveland Indians with a 7-0 win, the 2012 season has also been crazy, just plain crazy. The festivities of Moneyball weekend which celebrated the 10-year anniversary of the 20-game win streak have rubbed off on the current A's. A four-game win streak may pale in comparison, but it is a starting point. "You realize how hard it was for them to do that," Jemile Weeks said. "20 games is an unbelievable feat, and it is going to be one tough thing to beat." On this day in 2002 the A's had just won their sixth game in a row. Coincidentally, it was also against the Indians. Who'd have thought they'd go on to win 20 straight games, have a Hollywood movie telling their story, and an on-field ceremony that inspired a whole new crop of Oakland Athletics? "It was kind of an emotional pick up," Parker said. "We see those guys and what they've accomplished and we know we can do stuff like that too." The book and movie may have glossed over "the big three," but in real life the 2002 A's were built on pitching. In 2002 the A's had an American League-leading 3.68 ERA. For sake of comparison the 2012 A's have a 3.52 team ERA. Parker's career-high tying eight shutout innings on Sunday would have fit in nicely with the green and gold of yesteryear. The fun clubhouse dynamic is also a strikingly similar trait. Maybe the A's have more of a Moneyball vibe than we thought. "Brandon Inge is a clown. He always has fun. Bartolo Colon, whenever he catches a ground ball he looks to the third baseman before throwing to first, as well as the young guys," Coco Crisp said. "Everybody feels comfortable here. I think we all gel pretty well." Crisp had a career-high tying five RBIs on Sunday. He hit a three-run homer in the fifth inning and hit two RBI singles. The veteran center fielder has emerged as one of the team's most valuable players. "He gets big hits for us," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "With Jemile Weeks in the nine spot it makes a lot of sense to get a guy on second base for him, because he comes up so big for us."One thing the 2002 A's didn't do a lot of was bunt. On Sunday, Weeks bunted in his first two plate appearances and it worked. The first time up he bunted Cliff Pennington to second base, Crisp then followed with an RBI single. The second time up, Weeks bunted for a single only to have Crisp smack his seventh home run of the season in the next at-bat. Maybe bunting would have been the difference maker for the 2002 squad. When it was all said and done, the 10-year reunion weekend was a smashing success on the field and off of it. The Oakland Athletics won all three games and raised 20,000 dollars for charity, 10,000 going to the charity of late Athletics pitcher Cory Lidle, and another 10,000 going to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The celebration also put fans in the stands, something that didn't go unnoticed by the current players and coaching staff. "It's nice to be able to get in front of the home crowd again," Melvin said. "We had some good crowds this weekend on top of it, and they mean a lot to us."

A's make roster moves, DFA outfielder who played in 48 games in 2017


A's make roster moves, DFA outfielder who played in 48 games in 2017

In order to get their 40-man roster set for the Rule 5 Draft, the A's did a little roster reshuffling on Monday.

Among the casualties from the roster crunch was outfielder Jaycob Brugman, who played in 48 games for the A's in 2017.

Brugman and left-handed pitcher Sam Moll were designated for assignment in order to clear spots for the A's to add right-handed pitchers Heath Fillmyer and Lou Trivino to the 40-man roster.

During his stint with the A's last season, Brugman hit .266/.346/.343 with two doubles, three home runs and 12 RBI. Brugman participated in the recently-concluded Arizona Fall League, but didn't put up great numbers. He his just 1.82 in nine games.

The 23-year-old Fillmyer started 29 games for Double-A Midland and posted a 3.49 ERA in 149.2 innings. He was a fifth-round by the A's in 2014.

Trivino spent time with Midland and Triple-A Nashville during the 2017 season. In 48 relief appearances between the two levels, he posted a 3.03 ERA and struck out 65 batters in 68.1 innings.

Earlier on Monday, the A's acquired outfielder Ramon Laureano from the Astros for right-handed pitcher Brandon Bailey. Laureano was added to the 40-man roster and right-handed pitcher Bobby Wahl was outrighted to Triple-A Nashville.

The Rule 5 Draft will be held on Thursday, Dec. 14 at the Winter Meetings in Orlando.

A's hire Matt Williams as third base coach


A's hire Matt Williams as third base coach

OAKLANDThe Oakland A’s named Matt Williams as third base coach on Bob Melvin’s coaching staff for the 2018 season, the club announced today.

Williams spent five seasons on the Arizona Diamondbacks coaching staff as first base coach (2010) and third base coach (2011-13, 16) and also managed the Washington Nationals for two seasons.  He was named National League Manager of the Year by the BBWAA in his first season as manager in 2014, guiding the Nationals to a 96-66 record and an NL East title.  He went 83-79 in 2015 for a 179-145 (.552) record in two seasons as manager.

Williams played 17 seasons in the majors with San Francisco (1987-96), Cleveland (1997) and Arizona (1998-2003).  He was a .268 career hitter with 378 home runs and 1218 RBI in 1866 games.  Williams was a five-time All-Star and won four Gold Gloves as a third baseman.

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