Athletics

A's catcher Bruce Maxwell becomes first MLB player to kneel during anthem

A's catcher Bruce Maxwell becomes first MLB player to kneel during anthem

OAKLAND — A’s catcher Bruce Maxwell took a knee in protest during Saturday night’s national anthem at the Coliseum, believed to be the first major league baseball player to do so during the playing of the anthem.

Maxwell, stationed at the far left of his row of teammates and coaches in front of the A’s dugout, knelt with his hat over his heart. Outfielder Mark Canha stood next to Maxwell with his hand on Maxwell's shoulder, a show of support that's also been demonstrated by NFL players when their teammates have knelt during the anthem.

Athletes around the country have been hitting social media heavily Saturday, taking President Trump to task for a series of inflammatory tweets in which the President withdrew an invitation for the Warriors to visit the White House while also criticizing NFL players who kneel in protest for the anthem. Then-49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick was the first pro athlete to draw attention for kneeling during the anthem last season, doing so as a manner of protesting racial discrimination in the country.

Maxwell, who’s been out of the lineup the past couple days as he undergoes concussion protocol, lashed out at Trump in a profanity-laced Instagram post Saturday afternoon. He also tweeted the following:

Maxwell was born in Germany while his father, an Army officer, was stationed there. He grew up in Alabama.

MLB rumors: A's 'showing interest' in free-agent reliever Sergio Romo

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AP

MLB rumors: A's 'showing interest' in free-agent reliever Sergio Romo

Sergio Romo might be headed back to the Bay Area -- just to the opposite side.

The former Giants relief pitcher is a free agent, and according to MLB Network's Jon Morosi, the A's reportedly are interested in acquiring his services.

Romo, 36, is a 12-year veteran who spent the first nine seasons of his career with the Giants, playing a major role in helping San Francisco win three World Series titles in a span of five years. Over 60 1/3 combined innings with the Marlins and Twins last season, he posted a 3.43 ERA and 1.11 WHIP with 60 strikeouts and 20 saves.

[RELATED: How Forst thinks state of free-agent market will impact A's]

Liam Hendricks has Oakland's closer spot locked down, but with Blake Treinen being non-tendered, there could be one or more openings in the A's bullpen. Given that Romo has filled just about every possible role within a major league bullpen over the course of his career, he could be an ideal fit if the price is right.

How David Forst thinks state of MLB free-agent market will impact A's

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AP

How David Forst thinks state of MLB free-agent market will impact A's

During an interview last offseason on MLB Network, Indians manager Terry Francona joked he was upping his score in a game on his phone. That's how he described the "excitement" of the Winter Meetings.

Not much happened.

This year in San Diego, things could be different.

"It does seem like the narrative has been less about the starring free-agent market," A's general manager David Forst said Thursday on a conference call. "You know, we always kind of go at our own pace here. I think we have a good track record of targeting the players that we think fit for us and moving at our own pace."

Jurickson Profar also will be heading to San Diego, but as a member of the Padres. He was the first major trade of the A's offseason with catcher Austin Allen and a player to be named later coming back to Oakland in the deal. 

"I don't know that we're gonna be affected by what is going on in the rest of the industry, but it is nice that there's less of a narrative of how slow and boring things are and hopefully that continues next week," Forst said.

That narrative possibly being gone means Ken Rosenthal will continue to lose sleep and perhaps means the A's will get aggressive. 

[RELATED: A's remain in talks with Blake Treinen]

With the loss of Profar, Franklin Barreto and Jorge Mateo will get a chance to make an impression at spring training along with Sheldon Neuse who played at second base a bit last season. The A's, however, aren't set on the infield. 

"But we do continue to look for a left-handed option in the infield," Forst added.