A’s manager Bob Melvin was happy to not only be able to talk about Mitch Moreland now that his one-year signing became official Tuesday. He's also glad the A’s no longer have to throw to him.
“I’m tired of watching him hit balls off that back wall in Oakland in center field so we’re glad to have him,” Melvin said on a video call with reporters Tuesday morning.
Moreland was part of a wave of players who recently were acquired by the A’s. He fills the void from the trade that sent Khris Davis to the Texas Rangers at the beginning of February.
“Yeah, we just keep adding good players,” Melvin laughed. “Obviously we were looking for some left-handed bats. If you look up and down our roster, we’re a little bit right-handed heavy, but to bring in another guy who has experience, who’s just absolutely worn us out ... "
The 2018 All-Star is a career .275 hitter with 15 home runs in 53 games at the Coliseum.
Moreland will take more of a designated hitter/pinch-hitter role with the A’s in 2021. Despite his history of playing at first base, it appears the team is more than happy with who they have at the position.
“Probably doesn’t get a lot of time at first with [Matt Olson] over there, but just another quality veteran guy that makes us a better team," Melvin said.
As far as first impressions go, Melvin knows you can’t get a full read of a guy on the first day of live batting practice, but he, and the front office, has seen Moreland enough to know what they’re going to get.
“We know enough about to him to already have a good opinion on him,” Melvin said. “He’s a great guy. He absolutely loves being here like everybody else we’ve brought in. These veteran guys come in and try to win. I think that’s the constant theme about guys like [Sergio] Romo, [Trevor] Rosenthal ...[Yusmeiro] Petit coming back, and certainly, Jed [Lowrie] and now Moreland. It just adds to the mix for us.”