Athletics

A's take step forward in securing new ballpark at Howard Terminal

A's take step forward in securing new ballpark at Howard Terminal

Another step toward bringing a new ballpark to Howard Terminal at Jack London Square has been implemented.

On Monday, the A's announced the Board of Port Commissioners voted 7-to-0 to approve a term sheet between the Port of Oakland and the Oakland A's. This will outline the terms for the possible development of approximately 50 acres of property at the terminal.

"The vote is the culmination of a year of negotiations between the Port and A’s and is an important preliminary step in the process of public and regulatory reviews and real estate negotiations," the A's said in a press release.

“We are grateful to the Board of Port Commissioners,” Oakland A’s President Dave Kaval said. “In November, we announced our vision to build a waterfront ballpark and provide a baseball experience for our fans like no other.

"However, this project is bigger than baseball. It will deliver real economic, civic, and cultural benefits, including job creation and training opportunities; an inclusive approach to economic and community development; and new civic, cultural, and recreational amenities. Today’s vote is an important step in the process and we look forward to continuing to work with the Port, the City of Oakland, and the greater community.”

[RELATED: A's clear crucial hurdle to build new ballpark]

As mentioned, this is just another step. More work needs to be done, including an Environmental Impact Report that needs to be completed, the A's securing the right lands use approvals from the City of Oakland, the Port and "a variety of state and regional authorities."

Still, it's moving forward in the right direction and it appears Kaval is living up to his promises that work is being done and actions are being taken. 

MLB rumors: A's David Forst mad over delayed coronavirus tests results

MLB rumors: A's David Forst mad over delayed coronavirus tests results

The A's position players were supposed to conducted their first full workout at the Oakland Coliseum on Sunday. It didn't happen.

The team is hoping the workout might happen Monday, but it could be delayed again.

The Athletic's Alex Coffey reported Sunday night that the A's coronavirus tests have yet to be shipped from San Francisco to the league's lab in Utah.

According to Coffey, A's general manager David Forst told reporters that the July 4 holiday played a role in the tests not being shipped Saturday.

While A's pitchers and catchers were working out at the Coliseum on Sunday, position players can't participate until their coronavirus test results come back negative. In this case, the tests haven't even had a chance to be processed and analyzed.

Coffey reported, citing a source, that A's third baseman Matt Chapman "voiced his displeasure" to Forst.

Forst then sent a lengthy WhatsApp message to all A's players, and Coffey obtained a copy of the text. Here's part of what Forst wrote.

"MLB has informed me this evening that our test samples from Friday have not arrived at the lab," Forst wrote. "They were not delivered as intended on Saturday because of the federal holiday and then were not switched to Sunday delivery in time to arrive today. As of this moment, they are sitting at SFO waiting to fly to Salt Lake to be delivered to the lab by 1:30 Mountain Time tomorrow. On top of screwing up the logistics of this whole thing, neither MLB nor CDT (the company that collects the samples) communicated any of this to us until we pressed them for information, at which point all they could do was apologize, which frankly doesn’t really do much for us."

Forst continued to point the finger at the league for what happened this weekend.

"At this point, the blame lies with CDT and MLB and I won’t cover for them like I did earlier today," Forst wrote. "Despite having our schedule a week ahead of time, they didn’t alert us to the possibility of any complications around July 4th, and once there were issues, they did nothing to communicate that to us or remedy the situation until Nick (Paparesta, the A’s head athletic trainer) and I forced the issue at various times today. If possible, I’m as frustrated and pissed as you are (well, probably not as pissed as Matt is), and I assure you the rest of the staff is as well.”

While other teams have had their full squads working out at their home stadiums, the A's are now behind the eight-ball. With limited time to get ready for the 60-game 2020 season, every day matters.

Earlier in the day, before the A's knew the full extent of the delay, manager Bob Melvin expressed his frustration that position players weren't going to be able to work out Sunday.

[RELATED: Manaea might wear mask during starts]

According to Coffey, the A's tests are scheduled to arrive in Utah at 1:30 a.m. MT.

It's unclear if the lab can turn the tests around quick enough for the players to report to the Coliseum and conduct a full workout Monday evening.

A.J. Puk's new Summer Camp haircut has A's Sean Manaea in disbelief

A.J. Puk's new Summer Camp haircut has A's Sean Manaea in disbelief

Like most youngsters attending a summer camp, A's pitching prospect A.J. Puk wanted to make a good impression upon his arrival.

But no one was ready for Puk's appearance Sunday.

The prized left-hander showed up to the Oakland Coliseum for the A's Summer Camp workout minus his trademark blonde hair.

Yes, Puk got a haircut. Not just a trim. It's all gone.

Teammate Sean Manaea couldn't believe the rookie cut all his hair off.

Sometimes, everyone needs a fresh look, including Puk, who was known for his flowing hair.

Hair or no hair, the A's are expecting big things from Puk this season. The 2016 first-round draft pick will compete for a spot in Oakland's rotation. If Puk and fellow pitching prospect Jesus Luzardo win starting jobs, the A's could have one of the best rotations in baseball.

[RELATED: Manaea might wear mask during starts]

Manager Bob Melvin used Puk out of the bullpen last season, bringing him into 10 games. The 25-year-old posted a 3.18 ERA and 13 strikeouts in 11 1/3 innings pitched.

But now, Puk, without his hair, will look to help the A's win the World Series by being a part of their rotation.

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