A's in search of new bullpen coach

Oakland Athletics

A's in search of new bullpen coach

Just a week after announcing their complete coaching staff, the A’s have a vacancy to fill.

Garvin Alston, who assumed bullpen coach duties in June, was hired Thursday as the Minnesota Twins’ new pitching coach. Alston was a pitching coach and rehab coordinator in Oakland’s farm system from 2005-15, then spent 2016 as the Arizona Diamondbacks’ bullpen coach.

The A’s welcomed him back into the mix in June when they shook up their coaching staff. Curt Young was dismissed as pitching coach, Scott Emerson shifted from bullpen coach to pitching coach and Alston was brought in to assume Emerson’s former duties.

It’s the first shot at being a major league pitching coach for Alston, 45, who was a 10th round draft choice of Colorado in 1992 and made six relief appearances with the Rockies in 1996, his only big league playing time.

The A’s announced their complete 2018 coaching staff last Thursday, with Triple-A manager Ryan Christenson being promoted to serve as Bob Melvin’s new bench coach and Chip Hale sliding back into the role of third-base coach. Now they’ll need to find a new bullpen coach. The Twins fired pitching coach Neil Allen on Oct. 10 and chose Alston over more experienced candidates they interviewed such as Carl Willis and Jim Hickey.

Sometime in the near future the A’s are expected to announce a coaching position of some sort for Mark Kotsay, who began the 2017 season as bench coach but stepped away in June to be with his family after his daughter suffered a serious eye injury.

A's keep rolling, beat Rangers to run winning streak to four games

A's keep rolling, beat Rangers to run winning streak to four games


ARLINGTON -- Jed Lowrie hit a tiebreaking double in the seventh inning and the Oakland Athletics beat the Texas Rangers 3-2 on Tuesday night, tagging Cole Hamels with his fourth loss before the end of April for the first time in the left-hander's career.

Texas slugger Adrian Beltre exited with a left hamstring strain in the eighth after pulling up at first base on what would have been a double but was instead a single for his 3,075th career hit.

Lowrie's liner over the glove of diving center fielder Delino DeShields came against reliever Matt Bush after two doubles off Hamels in an inning that included a pair of Oakland baserunners getting thrown out at third base.

Andrew Triggs (2-0) allowed one run in six innings with six strikeouts, and former closer Santiago Casilla pitched a scoreless ninth for his first save.

Oakland rookie Lou Trivino struck out two batters to finish the eighth after coming in cold when Blake Treinen took a line drive from Shin-Soo Choo off his right leg and had to leave the game.

Trivino was called up from Triple-A Nashville earlier in the day when Yusmeiro Petit went on the bereavement list following the death of his mother in Venezuela. Petit was away from the team for four days earlier this month to spend time with his mom.

Hamels (1-4) gave up two runs in 6 1/3 innings and plunked three batters, matching the 2008 World Series MVP's career high set on April 20, 2016, in a 2-1 win against Houston. Rangers reliever Jake Diekman also hit a batter with a pitch.

The Rangers clinched their fifth straight series loss at home, the most to start a season since the franchise moved to Texas in 1972.

Mark Canha broke a scoreless tie in the sixth with his third homer, a solo shot that went in and out of leaping right fielder Nomar Mazara's glove just above the fence. Matt Olson hit an RBI double in the eighth.

Beltre's liner to the gap when he was injured was a single that scored Choo from first. The 39-year-old in his 21st season limped to first and went immediately to the dugout. Beltre had two hits and both Texas RBIs, driving in the first run on a sacrifice fly.

Athletics: RHP Liam Hendriks was to have a procedure to remove a cyst in his right hip, with a plasma injection for a muscle tear. Hendriks was already on the disabled list because of a right groin strain. He should be throwing off a mound in a few weeks.

Rangers: RHPs Tony Barnette (right shoulder inflammation) and Tim Lincecum (blister) threw live bullpen sessions. Manager Jeff Banister said Barnette probably won't return before Friday. Lincecum is on the 60-day DL.

RHP Kendall Graveman (0-4, 10.07 ERA), Oakland's opening day starter, has allowed at least four runs without throwing more than five innings in all five starts, the longest such streak to start a season for an A's pitcher since at least 1908. RHP Doug Fister (1-2, 3.59) is scheduled for Texas in the series finale as he returns from a right hip strain. His most recent start was April 9.

A's reliever Yusmeiro Petit wanted to pitch hours after his mother died

A's reliever Yusmeiro Petit wanted to pitch hours after his mother died

A's reliever Yusmeiro Petit suffered the worst kind of tragedy on Monday and still wanted to do his job.

Petit's mother, Rubia, passed away Monday, and just hours later, he made sure manager Bob Melvin knew that he wanted to pitch in the game against the Rangers.

"His mom passed away, actually, before the game yesterday. We all had heavy hearts for him. He really wanted to pitch. I was not going to use him in that game unless he really wanted to. And he really wanted to pitch yesterday. It ended up being a really tough day for him. I think early this morning he was flying home. We're all saddened for him. He's a pretty big personality in our clubhouse, which has nothing to do with that. It's been a tough couple of weeks for him," Melvin told reporters in Texas before Tuesday's game.

Last week, Petit was placed on the family medical emergency list. He returned to the team on Saturday, but was placed on the bereavement lists Tuesday.

Petit pitched 1.2 innings in the A's 9-4 win on Monday night. The first batter he faced, Jurickson Profar, lined a ball off the back of Petit's left leg. Despite getting hit, he stayed in the game.

Melvin was asked about Petit's outing in light of what he was dealing with.

"I'm amazed. And then gets hit on top of it and remains in the game, finishes that inning and goes back out and gets two other hitters out. I didn't expect it. Obviously, I appreciated it," Melvin said.