Athletics

Chapman earns spot on Baseball America's All-Rookie team

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USATSI

Chapman earns spot on Baseball America's All-Rookie team

A’s third baseman Matt Chapman was part of select company Tuesday, honored by Baseball America on its 2017 All-Rookie Team.

The team combines rookies from both leagues, and just one player is chosen at each position around the diamond, along with five starting pitchers and one reliever. Chapman is part of a star-studded 2017 class that includes Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge, a strong American League MVP candidate, and Dodgers first baseman Cody Bellinger, the strong favorite for NL Rookie of the Year.

Chapman took over third base duties for Oakland immediately upon his call-up June 15 and hit .234 with 14 home runs and 40 RBI in 86 games while playing standout defense. From the All-Star break on, he led major league rookies in doubles (21) and extra-base hits (37).

Chapman began producing highlight-reel defensive plays almost immediately, showing off a rocket arm, excellent hands and terrific range that helped him navigate the Coliseum’s vast foul territory. The 34 double plays he turned are the most by a third baseman in major league history with fewer than 100 games, and that total was fifth-most in the AL despite Chapman playing in just over a half-season of games.

His defense rated very high across several sabermetric categories. Among AL third basemen with at least 700 innings played, Chapman led the league in Defensive Runs Saved with 19. Tampa Bay’s Evan Longoria was a distant second with 11.

Whether Chapman’s reputation spread quickly enough to warrant Gold Glove consideration remains to be seen. Coaches and managers vote for the award during the season, with a sabermetric statistical component also factored in. Winners are announced in November.

The A’s knew they could expect excellent defense from Chapman, but general manager David Forst was pleasantly surprised by the rookie’s bat.

“I think we knew when we brought him up, though maybe it was a little sooner than we planned, that his glove would sort of keep him afloat,” Forst said. “I think the bigger surprise was how quickly his bat kind of leveled off. He’s going to swing and miss, but the extra base hits, the homers, the fact he performed the way he did offensively was really nice to see.”

A's bats kept quiet in loss to Giants in front of sellout crowd

A's bats kept quiet in loss to Giants in front of sellout crowd

BOX SCORE

OAKLAND — Dereck Rodriguez pitched three-hit ball into the seventh inning for his fourth consecutive win, and the San Francisco Giants beat the Oakland Athletics 5-1 on Friday night.

Pablo Sandoval and Ryder Jones homered for the Giants. Andrew McCutchen doubled, drove in a run and made a pair of sliding catches in right field.

Khris Davis doubled and scored for Oakland.

The A’s had won 21 of 27, including six of seven at the Coliseum, before losing in front of their first sellout crowd of the season.

The Bay Area rivals are in the midst of playing six consecutive games against each other. Oakland won two of three at San Francisco during the final series before the All-Star break.

Rodriguez (5-1) was masterful in his first career interleague start. Used as a reliever against the Chicago Cubs on July 11 in between starts, the right-hander allowed one run in 6 1/3 innings. He struck out five, hit two batters with pitches and retired 13 of 14 during one stretch.

Two weeks ago, Rodriguez was fighting for a spot in the Giants’ rotation amid a flurry of injuries to the team’s top three starters and poor outings by others. The son of Hall of Fame catcher Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez is likely to stay put now after lowering his ERA to 2.72 — second-lowest among San Francisco’s starters.

Reyes Moronta retired two batters. Mark Melancon and Tony Watson pitched one inning apiece to complete the four-hitter.

Jones, called up from Triple-A Sacramento before the game, hit a go-ahead homer in the fourth. Sandoval went deep in the seventh. Both home runs came off A’s starter Edwin Jackson (1-2).

McCutchen doubled and scored on Buster Posey’s single in the fourth and had a sacrifice fly in the eighth. He did his best work in the field.

A Gold Glove winner as a center fielder in 2012, McCutchen has been uneven in right field this season but made a pair of sparkling defensive plays to take hits away from Matt Chapman in the fourth and Jonathan Lucroy in the fifth. McCutchen finished with eight putouts.

Jackson allowed three runs in 6 1/3 innings. He struck out six and walked one.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Giants: 1B Brandon Belt was placed on the paternity list. Jones started at third base while Sandoval replaced Belt at first. ... 3B Evan Longoria (broken hand) went 2 for 3 with a double and an RBI in a rehab game with Sacramento.

UP NEXT

Giants LHP Madison Bumgarner (3-3, 2.90 ERA) goes for his fifth win in seven career starts against the A’s on Saturday night. RHP Trevor Cahill (1-2, 3.10) pitches for Oakland.

MLB rumors: A's close to deal for Mets reliever Familia

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USATSI

MLB rumors: A's close to deal for Mets reliever Familia

The A's are reportedly close to adding to their already strong bullpen Friday night, and are nearing a deal for RHP Jeurys Familia from the New York Mets, according to multiple reports. 

The 28-year-old Familia is in his seventh big league season, all with the Mets. In 40 appearances this season, he is 4-4 with a 2.88 ERA and 17 saves in 21 opportunities. He has notched 43 strikeouts in 40 2/3 innings, with an opponents batting average of .234.

For his career, Familia is 13-17 with a 2.66 ERA and 123 saves in 141 opportunities.

Familia would likely join Lou Trivino in a setup role for closer Blake Treinen. The A's are a perfect 38-0 when leading after seven innings this season, and 46-0 when leading after eight.