Athletics

Melvin credits A's front office for adding 'spark' to roster

Athletics

The Athletics quietly had an impressive MLB trade deadline. But the noise from the acquisitions gets louder as each game goes by. 

“That’s what the deadline’s all about is try to fortify your team and David [Forst] and Billy [Beane] do a good job of identifying what we need and I mean, in [Starling] Marte’s case it’s just been every game it feels like,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said Wednesday following the 5-4 win over the San Diego Padres. 

Outfielder Marte was acquired by the A’s on July 28 before the frenzied deadline, for pitcher Jesús Luzardo. The day he was placed in the lineup, he immediately made an impact.

In six games with Oakland, Marte has nine hits and has struck out only three times in 23 plate appearances.

In the bottom of the tenth inning of Wednesday's game, Marte hit a single to right field to move Mark Canha to third base. Canha would then score, followed by Marte to get the win.

Marte’s bat and speed on the bases have contributed quickly to the A’s success. Ramón Laureano, who typically patrolls center field, was happy to volunteer the shift to right field in order to accommodate Marte. 

Veteran catcher Yan Gomes, who was acquired at the deadline from the Washington Nationals along with utility man Josh Harrison, hit a single in the bottom of the ninth inning. It tied the game.

 

“Certainly Gomes has come up with a couple big hits for us too, [Josh] Harrison gives a lot of spark, [Andrew] Chafin getting in the game again too, so all these guys played a part in it today and we expect to down the road.”

The 2019 World Series champion Gomes also offers a reprieve for Sean Murphy who deserves a break here and there. 

A’s first baseman Matt Olson, who was at the helm of the walk-off, said the new guys have blended in perfectly with the team.

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“Yeah, they’ve been great,” Olson said. “Obviously the way that they’re swinging the bat and the way they just carry themselves on the field is super important, but it’s nice to have veteran guys to come in who’ve been doing it for a while and doing it in different ways is kind of a different mindset, a different perspective, coming in and able to talk with us and work with us. It’s been awesome having them.”