By Jason Wojciechowski on February 19, 2014 at 8:58 PM
Players are doing baseball things in places where we can see them. Thus it is time to round up links again.
Jane Lee has a piece about Yoenis Cespedes bringing more focus to his game and being more consistent and .uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu
oh whoa sorry I guess all the spring training cliches put me to sleep.
In this notebook, Bob Melvin threatens to use hit-and-run. Yuck.
More seriously, if you've got Alberto Callaspo at the plate, I guess it's not the worst thing in the world to do with him and hope to get a cheap first-to-third out of it, but I'm not sure there's anyone else on the roster I want doing the H&R thing at the plate, regardless of all the speed Coco Crisp and Craig Gentry and whoever else bring. Besides, H&R takes away the chance at a legit steal from guys who are among the best percentage basestealers around.
Also apparently Addison Russell won't break camp with the A's! Related: Chris Kusiolek looks at A's prospects making the transition to the Texas League.
Everybody was talking about "exposure" in the context of the A's yesterday -- here's the Susan Slusser piece that talks about it. As explained there, it just amounts to a recognition that players can get hurt and backups will have to play. At which spots does an injury or other unavailability hurt you most? The team identified Derek Norris as that player and I have a hard time disagreeing too vehemently:
Hey, look at all the question marks, as usual. A lot of the spots are weird -- if Vogt goes down, you probably just make Norris the full-time catcher rather than replace Vogt with another lefty hitter. I don't anticipate that Gentry will actually designatedly hit, but maybe Cespedes moves to DH against lefties with Gentry playing the outfield. The A's know a lot more about how the roster is going to shake out than I do, so they can do the math better than me, but it looks to me like the biggest spots of worry are Moss, Norris, and Gentry. If the A's were to lose two outfielders, they could be stretched thin very quickly, even with Moss's ability to move to a corner -- who's hanging around ready to whack the ball at first base? Stephen Vogt? Who knows whether Barton remains available to the A's with his lack of options. Same for Michael Taylor "backing up" Gentry.
Per Susan Slusser, the A's could be opening 2015 in Taiwan. I'm already exhausted in advance.