Todd Walker and Jason Stokes

By Jason Wojciechowski on March 31, 2007 at 4:17 AM

A couple of A's transactions on the "injured first baseman" front. First, Todd Walker signed a minor-league deal with Oakland. There's noise that he'll be a guy to compete for time at first base, but that's a terrible idea. The A's are a punchless team as it is. Having Walker playing first base just exacerbates that when the other option is Erubiel Durazo, who at least has some power.

Better, and likely more unheralded, is the fact that John Baker, a minor league catcher, has been traded for Jason Stokes. Stokes is a first baseman with a pretty decent (if not outstanding) minor league track record in Florida's system. He's a guy who's been willing to take a walk and has flashed occasional power as well. Except for the fact that he's right-handed, he strikes me as nearly a Dan Johnson clone - I wouldn't be surprised if he's on the team in relatively short order. On the other hand, given the A's befuddling decision-making at times, I also wouldn't be surprised if Todd Walker is leading the "hit and run" charge as the A's first baseman for 80 games this year. Ugh.