Witasick, Hatteberg, and a hitting coach

By Jason Wojciechowski on November 3, 2005 at 3:08 AM

The Oakland news of the day is that Jay Witasick will be back for two years, apparently at just $2.75M total. That strikes me as a really nice deal. Witasick's been a very nice reliever since about 2001, he'll be 33 and 34 in this contract and he'll likely continue to be very tradeable in case some cheaper youngsters need a space on the team or something. If he were traded, by the way, it'd be for the seventh time in his career. He's been traded for Todd Stottlemyre, Brian Meadows, D'Angelo Jimenez, and John Vander Wal in the past.

(Ken Arneson isn't so happy with the deal. This post by Ken elaborates on the deal and expresses displeasure with the fact that it's too guaranteed years.)

In other news, to no one's surprise, Scott Hatteberg's option was declined. I'd like the A's to convince him to hang it up now and join the front office because there's just no room for a first baseman who can't crack a .400 slugging percentage. He had a better year than anyone could ever have hoped for in 2002, and he's become something of an A's institution, but he's exhausted his utility to the team on the field.

(Ken, same article as the second one above, feels the same way.)

Finally, Gerald Perry has been named the A's hitting coach. Perry spent 13 seasons in the majors with Atlanta, Kansas City, and St. Louis as a first baseman and occasional outfielder. He hit .265 for his career with a mediocre walk rate and very little power, though he was an All Star in 1988. Perry was apparently the Pittsburgh hitting coach last season, so the Pennsylvania connections continue with the team (maybe Macha really pushed for him?).

(Ken, once more, elaborates on Perry, noting that he was the Mariners hitting coach a few years ago, and also got into a fight with Dave Duncan once.)