Athletics

A's say they have no regrets as Kyler Murray chooses NFL draft over MLB

A's say they have no regrets as Kyler Murray chooses NFL draft over MLB

The news didn't come as a surprise, but it stung the A's nonetheless.

Kyler Murray, the A's first-round draft pick last June, announced Monday he is pursuing a professional football career. While Murray reportedly will repay the majority of his signing bonus, Oakland will not receive a compensation pick.

Still, A's general manager David Forst says the team has no regrets.

"We took the best athlete on the board and what we thought was the best baseball player on the board too," Forst told reporters (via MLB.com's Jane Lee) at the team's facility in Mesa, Az. on Monday. "We don’t regret the pick at all."

As the saying goes, hindsight is 20/20. While the A's were fully aware of the risks involved with drafting Murray, they felt his talent warranted a roll of the dice. Unfortunately, it came up snake eyes.

[RELATED: A's sign former Giants catcher Hundley to minor league deal]

Murray is projected to be a first-round pick in April's NFL draft, which would make him the first athlete ever selected in the first round of both the MLB and NFL draft. The A's will retain his baseball rights, in the case his football career doesn't work out, but Oakland manager Bob Melvin thinks that's a long shot.

"I have a hard time believing he's not going to have a great football career," Melvin told reporters in Arizona.

If nothing else, the A's can finally move on from the Murray distraction, and focus on their current squad. Monday marked the official start of spring training, with pitchers and catchers reporting to the team's facility. Position players report on Friday.

A's sign free-agent outfielder Robbie Grossman to one-year contract

A's sign free-agent outfielder Robbie Grossman to one-year contract

Spring training is here and the A's are adding to their depth in the outfield. 

The A's have officially signed outfielder Robbie Grossman, the team announced on Friday. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic was first to report the news on Wednesday.

Grossman, 29, hit .273 with a .751 OPS last season for the Twins. He was also worth 1.5 bWAR. 

[RELATED: Brett Anderson re-signs with A's on one-year contract]

The switch-hitter also brings versatility on defense. Grossman has experience at all three outfield positions. In 2018, he played 52 games in right field, 34 in left field and served as the DH 36 times. 

A's should target a pair of pitchers as Marlins' fire sale continues

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USATSI

A's should target a pair of pitchers as Marlins' fire sale continues

At the rate they're going, the Marlins might not be able to field a team on Opening Day.

Last week, Miami traded talented young catcher J.T. Realmuto to the Phillies, continuing their seemingly never-ending fire sale. As ESPN's Sam Miller pointed out, the Marlins have now traded 23 of their top 25 players in franchise history, based on WAR.

With Miami clearly tanking this year, there might be an opportunity for the A's to add some talent before the season starts. CBS Sports' R.J. Anderson listed nine players who could soon be shipped off by the Marlins. We've selected two the A's should target:

José Ureña - SP

José Ureña would have a chance to be the A's number one or two starter. The 27-year-old right-hander is coming off a solid 2018 season with the Marlins, going 9-12 with a 3.98 ERA and 1.18 WHIP in 174 innings.

Ureña was even better in 2017, finishing 14-7 with a 3.82 ERA. He has always had great stuff but has struggled a bit with his command. Getting out of Miami would probably serve him well, and what better place to pitch than the Oakland Coliseum?

Ureña will earn just $3.2 million this season and is under team arbitration control through 2021, making him even more attractive to a team like the A's. With Oakland's wealth of outfielders and prospects, a trade for Ureña wouldn't be unrealistic.

[RELATED: A's manager Melvin praises Luzardo's wicked breaking ball]

Dan Straily - SP

Dan Straily is another starter who could help solidify the A's rotation. The veteran right-hander began his career in Oakland, spending three seasons with the A's from 2012-14.

Last year, Straily went 5-6 with a 4.12 ERA and 1.30 WHIP in 122 1/3 innings. The 30-year-old has a career ERA of 4.23 in seven Major League seasons.

Straily is scheduled to make $5 million this season and has one more year of arbitration control. He could potentially slot in as the A's number three or four starter and likely wouldn't cost a whole lot to acquire.