Celtics

A's trade for a bat for the stretch run

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A's trade for a bat for the stretch run

From Comcast SportsNet
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- The Oakland Athletics landed their veteran shortstop in Stephen Drew. Current shortstop Cliff Pennington and the rest of the A's players found out by ballpark announcement late in the game. The A's acquired Drew from the Arizona Diamondbacks on Monday in exchange for minor league infielder Sean Jamieson. The trade, announced by Oakland before the seventh inning of Monday night's game with the Minnesota Twins, reunites Drew with former D-backs manager Bob Melvin -- in his first full season as A's skipper. "It'll be refreshing and a new start," Drew said. "It's a good feeling to go over there and still be competing (for the postseason)." Drew is expected to join Oakland in time to play the middle game of the series against the Twins on Tuesday. He recently returned after being sidelined for nearly a year with a fractured right ankle. He sat out 137 games in all. The 29-year-old Drew is batting .193 with two home runs and 12 RBIs in 40 games since coming back June 26. "Coming back, I've been hitting the ball well but haven't been finding any holes," he said. Diamondbacks general manager Kevin Towers said last month it was "highly unlikely" the team would trade Drew this season, saying he hadn't received an offer for either Drew or Justin Upton that would improve the Arizona club. A's GM Billy Beane must have changed his mind. "We must be very persuasive," Oakland assistant GM David Forst said, noting the A's will see how the remainder of the season goes with Drew before making any decisions about his status with the club for 2013. "It was more than likely he would have tested free agency so we probably would have only had his services for another six weeks," Towers said. "I have no doubt in my mind that he'll make the A's a much better ballclub." Oakland, a surprise playoff contender this season with a cast of moving parts and new faces, had been looking for a consistent regular in the middle of the infield given the struggles and injuries of Pennington and Adam Rosales. Pennington is hitting .198 with three home runs and 18 RBIs in 92 games. That includes batting 6 for 29 (.207) in 10 games since returning from the disabled list Aug. 7 after missing time with elbow tendinitis -- his first career DL stint. "He plays the same position, so I guess we'll see what happens," Pennington said. "I was sitting there in the dugout and they announced it. I have no idea what those guys (in the front office) think. I'm going to try to pretend I do." During the 2007 postseason playing for Melvin and the NL West champions, Drew batted .387 with two home runs and four RBIs in seven games, including .294 (5 for 17) against the Colorado Rockies in the NL championship series. "I do know Stephen and he's a good player," Melvin said, preferring to wait until Tuesday to elaborate on the move. "He'll be a good fit here." Drew is coming off the severe ankle injury and has a 10 million mutual option for next season. If the option is not picked up, Drew receives a 1.35 million buyout. "I think he's probably recovered better than I thought," Towers said. "We have a lot of middle infielders and it's tough to spread the reps and at bats among three middle infielders." The A's will make corresponding moves to their 40-man and 25-man rosters upon Drew's arrival. He is currently in an 0-for-15 stretch and is batting .069 (2 for 29) over his past nine games. Drew homered in consecutive games Aug. 5-7. Second baseman Jemile Weeks said the announcement was "surprising to everybody." "He's a good player, so if he comes along and jumps in and fits in and helps us win, we're all for it," Weeks said. "I guess they're trying to make a push, they're trying to improve what they feel they need to improve. They're trying to head in a certain direction. Obviously they have that vision in their heads and that's what they're trying to show right now." The 23-year-old Jamieson, Oakland's 17th-round draft pick out of Canisius College in 2011, was batting .234 with 10 home runs, 49 RBIs and 25 stolen bases in 118 games for Single-A Burlington.

Grzelcyk happy to be back w/ B's and confident in his game

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Grzelcyk happy to be back w/ B's and confident in his game

BRIGHTON, Mass – It had to be a bitter pill for Matt Grzelcyk to be sent back down to the AHL after playing solidly for the Bruins earlier this season. 

The 23-year-old Charlestown native was excellent playing in place of Torey Krug in Boston’s opening night win over the Nashville Predators, but his stay didn’t last very long. The former Boston University standout was back in the minor leagues shortly afterward once Krug returned from his fractured jaw a little earlier than expected. Now Krug is again banged up again with an upper body injury, and Grzelcyk has been called up to fill in for Krug during Wednesday night’s pre-Thanksgiving road game in New Jersey against the Devils.

Once again it will be about a focus on puck-moving and power play for Grzelcyk, who is the closest thing that the Bruins have to the smaller, skilled Krug in their minor league system. 

“I was happy with how things went before I got sent to Providence, so I’m just going to try to do the things that I was doing well before I got sent down. Mentally knowing that I can play at the NHL level [is huge], and just going through the experience was positive,” said Grzelcyk. “Mentally my first year I think I was a little too nervous and tentatively with my play, and that’s not me at all when I’m at my best. I’m confident with the puck, and confident with my speed and ability. It was just about going out and doing it on the ice.”

Grzelcyk was okay down in Providence with four assists and a plus-4 rating in 14 games, but he’s been patiently waiting for another NHL call since logging 12:11 of solid puck-moving ice time in his lone appearance for Boston this season. Now he’ll get it in a likely pairing with Kevan Miller against the New Jersey Devils

“He’s a puck-mover. He’s quick. He can get up the ice and support the rush, and he’s a good distributor,” said Cassidy of Grzelcyk. “There are a lot of natural similarities to Torey [Krug] because of their physical makeup, but they are similar [players] with Torey at this level being a bit more significant offensive player. Whether it’s in [Grzelcyk] or not time will tell, but we believe it is and we just need to get it out of him.”

Grzelcyk will get a chance to show that offensive wrinkle and more when he suits up against the New Jersey Devils for his second game of the season after paying his dues with the P-Bruins overt the last month. 

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