Athletics

A's forget about loss to Mariners celebrating second straight playoff berth

A's forget about loss to Mariners celebrating second straight playoff berth

If you thought a 4-3 loss to Seattle would stop the A's from enjoying their second straight playoff berth, think again.

Oakland put Friday night's disappointment behind them in a hurry and celebrated another terrific season that will again carry into October.

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"We would like to have done it on the winning end of that thing," A's manager Bob Melvin told NBC Sports California. "It takes a little bit to let it digest. But at the end of the day, we've got 96 wins. We followed up what we did last year and that is this team setting themselves up, not only last year, following it up this year, and for the future. I think there are a lot of bright things to look forward to. So we'll celebrate this, but these guys will come back tomorrow looking to secure home (field advantage)."

Added Friday's starting pitcher Mike Fiers: "This is what it's all about. Helping your team get to a postseason -- anything can happen once you get in the postseason, especially with these guys. We play all-around good baseball. We have our chance. It's all about going out there and showing it."

After starting the season 19-25, Oakland caught fire and went 77-39, reaching 96 wins with two games remaining. That follows last season when the A's went 97-65 after a 34-46 start.

"The feeling that's going through me right now is unbelievable," said starting pitcher Sean Manaea. "I can't even describe it."

Added outfielder Robbie Grossman: "When you play with this special of a group of guys for the last seven months, you grind it out every single day and you have hopes and dreams of doing this at the end of the year. It doesn't get better than this."

The A's will play the Tampa Bay Rays in Wednesday's Wild Card Game -- we just don't know which team will host yet. Each squad is 96-64, but Oakland owns the tiebreaker, having won four of the seven regular-season meetings. That means the A's can clinch home-field advantage with two wins over the weekend.

"It's something that we all dream of," said outfielder Ramon Laureano. "I'm looking forward to this challenge. I've been preparing for it, so let's go."

Added pitcher Jesus Luzardo: "It feels amazing. I'm just happy to be here. It's a great group of guys. Hopefully, we keep going and make a long run."

Of course, last season ended in the Wild Card Game with a 7-2 loss to the Yankees. This year's A's believe they have what it takes to play deeper into October.

"We are in in a position to make a run at this thing," said third baseman Matt Chapman. "That's all you can ask for."
 

A's top pick Logan Davidson among spring training non-roster invitees

A's top pick Logan Davidson among spring training non-roster invitees

The A's aren't playing it safe with 2019 first-round draft pick Logan Davidson.

The No. 29 overall pick is among 10 non-roster players the A's invited to spring training Friday.

Davidson, a shortstop, isn't on the A's 40-man roster, but the invite will give him a chance to compete in big league camp. Barring an incredible showing in the Cactus League, the A's No. 7 prospect won't break camp with the A's. But this opportunity allows him to try to impress A's coaches.

In 54 games with the short-season Vermont Lake Monsters, Davidson slashed .239/.345/.332 with seven doubles, four homers and 12 RBI.

[RELATED: A's compare Davidson to Corey Seager]

The other invitee to keep an eye on in camp is A's No. 6 prospect Nick Allen. While small in stature, the middle infielder is an incredible defensive player and could find himself playing for the A's at some point in 2020. While Marcus Semien is blocking Allen's path at shortstop, the 21-year-old could get a look at second base if none of the other in-house options pan out for Oakland.

Three other top-30 prospects were invited to spring training: Outfielder Greg Deichmann (No. 17), right-handed pitcher Brian Howard (No. 22) and right-handed pitcher Parker Dunshee (No. 24).

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.