Athletics

A's trade Jorge Mateo to Padres before start of 2020 MLB Summer Camp

A's trade Jorge Mateo to Padres before start of 2020 MLB Summer Camp

The A's removed one player from the second base position battle Tuesday.

Oakland traded prospect Jorge Mateo to the San Diego Padres for a player to be named later, the team announced.

ESPN's Jeff Passan first reported news of the trade.

Mateo, 25, was expected to compete with Franklin Barreto and Tony Kemp for time at second base this season.

A natural shortstop, Mateo is an incredible athlete, but he's never been able to live up to the hype since being signed by the New York Yankees out of the Dominican Republic in 2012.

The A's acquired Mateo, Dustin Fowler and James Kaprielian in exchange for starter Sonny Gray in 2017.

There was speculation over the winter that the A's could use Mateo as a trade chip to acquire a major-league ready piece. But it appears Mateo didn't quite have that kind of value on the trade market.

The A's had Mateo spend the last two seasons at Triple-A. In 2018, he hit .230/.280/.353 with three homers and 45 RBI for the Nashville Sounds. But a season later, he upped those numbers to .289/.330/.504 with 19 homers and 78 RBI when the A's affiliate moved to Las Vegas.

While the Yankees experimented with Mateo in the outfield, the A's never went down that road. He played second base and shortstop the last two seasons in the minor leagues.

[RELATED: Projecting A's 30-man roster]

The A's initially announced a 54-man roster for the 2020 MLB season, with the plan to add prospects to fill out the 60-man roster. Removing Mateo from the equation gives Oakland the ability to add another player that it might not have originally considered.

Oakland had hoped to tap into Mateo's potential, but it's clear by the move that they felt there was no spot for him on the big league roster.

Jake Diekman's wife appreciates Bob Melvin's message to A's players

Jake Diekman's wife appreciates Bob Melvin's message to A's players

A's reliever Jake Diekman is considered a high-risk player for the 2020 MLB season, but as of now, he has no plans to opt out.

So that means his teammates need to be extra cautious regarding the coronavirus. If one of them contracts the virus, they could pass it to Diekman. That outcome could end up being very bad.

Since the age of 11, Diekman has had ulcerative colitis, a disease that affects the colon. In 2016, Diekman underwent surgery to remove his colon. A year later, he had a second procedure where doctors used his small intestines to create a "J-Pouch," a replacement colon.

No one understands the risk to Diekman more than A's manager Bob Melvin.

During a Zoom conference call with A's reporters Saturday, Melvin mentioned that he plans to address his team Sunday about taking the coronavirus precautions as seriously as possible.

“How important it is to try to stay in as much of a bubble as we possibly can,” Melvin said, according to The San Francisco Chronicle's Matt Kawahara. “It is literally like it is in real life, understanding that you’re doing this for the person next to you, too.

"You’re staying healthy for not only yourself and your family but your teammates and their families.”

Melvin will be sure to mention Diekman.

“His name will come up as well, that it’s very important to take this seriously,” Melvin said, according to Kawahara.

Melvin's comments made their way to Amanda Diekman, Jake's wife.

[RELATED: Diekman dominated TikTok during stoppage]

Melvin is widely loved by his players, and this is another example of why. He cares about all the guys.

The A's acquired Diekman last July from the Kansas City Royals, and re-signed him to a two-year contract this offseason. The 34-year-old is expected to be a key piece of Melvin's bullpen this season.

Cleveland Indians follow Washington, could change controversial name

Cleveland Indians follow Washington, could change controversial name

Have we seen the last game between the A's and the Cleveland Indians as they're known today? Just hours after the NFL team in Washington announced it would consider changing its racist nickname, Cleveland's MLB franchise released a statement indicating that the team was open to discussions on changing the "Indians" nickname.

The franchise has used the "Indians" moniker for over a century, switching over from the Cleveland Naps back in 1915. Broncos, Bluebirds, Lake Shores and Bustlers all also are nicknames the franchise has had in its lengthy history.

[RELATED: How Black MLB players are confined by baseball's conservative culture]

 

Cleveland's management clearly has understood how the nickname could be considered offensive, as it removed the controversial "Chief Wahoo" alternate logo from the team's uniforms and most apparel at the end of the 2018 season.

Public pressure has mounted in the wake of sweeping support across the nation for reform to fight systemic racism and police brutality in the United States. 

It won't be a surprise if we see not one, but two major American sports franchises completely rebrand with a new nickname and mascot before 2020 wraps up.

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