Canha among impressive hitters in intrasquad game

Gray hurls one inning; Graveman tunes up for Cactus League opener

Canha among impressive hitters in intrasquad game

MESA, Ariz. -- A's manager Bob Melvin wasn't quite prepared for what he saw from his hitters, who teed off some of the club's best arms during a pair of brief intrasquad games Thursday morning.

Right-handers Sonny Gray and Kendall Graveman squared off in one game, each dueling with a large handful of the team's better bats. Among the highlights was Mark Canha's two-out RBI double against Gray.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Murphy makes impression on A's with arm

Oakland catcher making most of time in camp

Murphy makes impression on A's with arm

MESA, Ariz. -- Sean Murphy, the walk-on Wright State University catcher who blossomed into the A's third-round Draft pick, has a standout arm that's drawing attention in big league camp.

"The kid can throw," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "It's special. We heard that coming in, but to actually see him throw to bases, it's one of those where you tell the infielder, 'If the ball looks low, give it a chance, because it's carrying,' and he threw some balls that looked like they might not make it but had that carry on them. It's an electric arm for sure."

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rosales ready to be mentor to young A's

Veteran utility player recalls advice from former teammate Ellis

Rosales ready to be mentor to young A's

MESA, Ariz. -- Seven years later, Mark Ellis has resumed the role of mentor to Adam Rosales, one of his many students gathering in the infield each morning for early work this spring.

Except the 33-year-old Rosales is essentially now the same age the since-retired Ellis was in 2010; and with years comes experience and veteran status -- and Ellis, in A's camp as a guest instructor, is urging him to do some of his own tutoring.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's Graveman soaking in knowledge

To be the best, right-hander seeks out mentors to harness command

A's Graveman soaking in knowledge

MESA, Ariz. -- A's camp has been open less than two weeks, and Kendall Graveman is already playing with pinpoint command, his manager labeling him "quite the perfectionist" after watching the right-hander throw a bullpen session recently.

"It's a testament to how hard he's working," manager Bob Melvin said. "He missed the glove one time -- and got really frustrated about missing the glove one time in his second bullpen."

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's Melvin on board with rule change

Intentional walks will be issued by dugout sign

A's Melvin on board with rule change

MESA, Ariz. -- No longer will pitchers lob four balls to home plate. Major League Baseball is eliminating the old-fashioned intentional walk, instead electing for a dugout signal as part of ongoing efforts to improve the pace of play.

A's manager Bob Melvin, at least when considering alternative options being mulled to speed up games, is on board with the decision.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Phil Rogers

AL-inclusive: Everyone has eyes on West title

AL-inclusive: Everyone has eyes on West title

PHOENIX -- Jerry Dipoto knows that the Astros are favored to win the American League West, and if baseball analysts aren't talking about Jose Altuve's budding powerhouse, they're focused on the Rangers. Why not? They've won the AL West two years in a row.

Dipoto hides his confidence with a sheepish grin.

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Phil Rogers is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hahn to start A's Cactus League opener

Hahn to start A's Cactus League opener

MESA, Ariz. -- A's right-hander Jesse Hahn, looking to sneak his way back into the rotation, has been gifted the opportunity to make an early impression. He is set to start Saturday's Cactus League opener against the defending World Series champion Cubs.

Hahn was the A's No. 3 starter when the 2015 season opened, but he went down to injury after just 16 starts -- pitching to a 3.35 ERA -- and he has since struggled to showcase that form consistently, spending much of 2016 in the Minor Leagues and consequently becoming a bit of a forgotten man.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

New A's reliever Casilla held up by visa process

New A's reliever Casilla held up by visa process

MESA, Ariz. -- The A's are still awaiting the arrival of their newest reliever and hold out hope Santiago Casilla will be in camp "any day," manager Bob Melvin said Tuesday.

The veteran right-hander is held up in the Dominican Republic by visa paperwork that was delayed because he was a late sign, only committing to a second tour with the A's -- via a two-year, $11 million deal -- in late January.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bassitt revamping mechanics while rehabbing

Bassitt revamping mechanics while rehabbing

MESA, Ariz. -- Rehabbing from Tommy John surgery is a long, arduous process that can be equal parts lonely and boring. Except A's right-hander Chris Bassitt has hardly been lonely, and only occasionally bored.

Bassitt has struck up a close friendship with rehab partner Felix Doubront, and the two A's pitchers have charted identical rehab schedules after undergoing elbow reconstruction surgery within a month of each other last year. Bassitt feels spoiled by Doubront's constant company, "because if I didn't have him," he said, "it would be really, really hard."

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Doolittle easing into spring after injury-plagued '16

Doolittle easing into spring after injury-plagued '16

MESA, Ariz. -- A year ago, A's left-hander Sean Doolittle temporarily changed his Twitter handle to "BestShapeOfMyLifeGuy," after proclaiming on the first day of Spring Training that he was, in fact, in the best shape of his life.

Hyperbole or not, it's a common line players throw around excessively upon reporting to camp, and Doolittle at least laughed at himself while using it. This year, though?

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kaval out to improve Coliseum fan experience

A's president discusses ongoing search for new stadium location

Kaval out to improve Coliseum fan experience

MESA, Ariz. -- The Coliseum food scene is getting a makeover under the watch of new A's president Dave Kaval, who is making good on his promise to improve the fan experience and embrace the club's history while waiting for a new stadium in Oakland to take shape.

"People were not satisfied with the food experience," said Kaval, who opens his doors to fans during weekly office hours.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

K. Davis decides against playing in Classic

A's left fielder choosing to focus on Spring Training ahead of season

K. Davis decides against playing in Classic

MESA, Ariz. -- A's left fielder Khris Davis has bowed out of the World Baseball Classic, forgoing his invitation from Team Mexico to focus his energy on preparing for his second season in Oakland.

Davis, speaking Sunday upon reporting to camp, said the decision was "horrible, I feel terrible," but he believes it to be in the best interest of the A's.

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Jane Lee has covered the Athletics for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rosales, A's celebrate Glove Day on Sunday

Rosales, A's celebrate Glove Day on Sunday

MESA, Ariz. -- A's super-utility man Adam Rosales isn't so much attached to his gloves, but he still enjoys the day he receives his new ones from Wilson each spring, as he did Sunday morning.

Rosales signed on with Wilson in 2010 and has since sported three custom-designed gloves, one each molded for the infield, outfield and first base.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rested, recovered Lowrie joins A's camp

Rested, recovered Lowrie joins A's camp

MESA, Ariz. -- A's second baseman Jed Lowrie is able to run again, and sleep better.

The nine-year veteran had two surgeries within a month last year. First, a multifaceted procedure to repair ligament damage and remove a bunion and cyst in his left foot. Then, an operation to resolve a deviated septum and relieve him of nasal issues that had disrupted his sleep for nearly a decade.

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Jane Lee has covered the Athletics for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

The A's made a special baseball card for a young fan

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The A's made a special baseball card for a young fan

Some of the baseball-playing children of today will grow up to be the stars of tomorrow. That's just how things work.

Recently, a father sent the A's a precious photo of his young son, fully decked out in green and gold, with a question about their Spring Training roster.

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A's Hahn hoping to find early-2015 form

Once a promising starter, righty trying to overcome recent struggles

A's Hahn hoping to find early-2015 form

MESA, Ariz. -- Not long ago the A's No. 3 starter, right-hander Jesse Hahn is simply hoping to crack the team's rotation, and he'll seemingly need to put together a near-perfect spring to do so.

A forearm strain prematurely ended Hahn's promising 2015 season, and that was only the beginning of a rocky voyage that has challenged the right-hander both physically and mentally.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Prospect Puk adding curve to repertoire

After ditching pitch in college, first-round pick advised to bring it back

Prospect Puk adding curve to repertoire

MESA, Ariz. -- A.J. Puk was nearly driving age by the time he learned how to throw a curveball, and it wasn't long after that his college coaches told him to stash it away for a future date.

That time is now. The left-hander has recently pulled it out of his pocket for the first time in nearly four years.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

R. Davis brings World Series experience to A's

Veteran center fielder enters Spring Training slated as club's leadoff hitter

R. Davis brings World Series experience to A's

MESA, Ariz. -- New A's center fielder Rajai Davis couldn't put back on the uniform soon enough, reaching for the green and gold the moment he found his locker upon joining camp Thursday morning.

"He had his cap and his jersey on, and his slacks and his dress shoes," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "I said, 'Did you come in here like that?' I know he's excited about being here, and those are the type of guys we need here."

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Joyce sees promise in 2017 A's upon arrival

Out of options, right-hander Alcantara vies for spot on roster

Joyce sees promise in 2017 A's upon arrival

MESA, Ariz. -- Veteran Matt Joyce, signed by the A's to a two-year deal to play in a platoon in right field, descended upon A's camp Thursday morning following an adventurous travel day to the desert.

Joyce had quite the entourage in tow from 35-degree temperatures in Connecticut: his wife, Brittany, along with their 1-month-old daughter, Kensington, and three dogs: Eli, Sky and Ru.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Opportunity abounds on A's mound

Melvin to reward pitchers who stay ready

Opportunity abounds on A's mound

MESA, Ariz. -- The message was simple and succinct: "Here," A's manager Bob Melvin told his pitchers on Wednesday morning, "everybody gets an opportunity."

A whopping 34 pitchers are in A's camp this year -- accounting for roughly half of the 70 players expected in attendance by the time full-squad workouts begin Sunday -- and Melvin and Co. have every reason to keep eyes on each one of the pitchers.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Montas lighting up spring

Recovered from rib injury, top prospect finds command

Montas lighting up spring

MESA, Ariz. -- Flamethrower Frankie Montas was atop manager Bob Melvin's must-see list Wednesday, and the young righty didn't disappoint.

Montas, Oakland's No. 10 prospect acquired in the deal that sent outfielder Josh Reddick and starter Rich Hill to the Dodgers last summer, fired fastballs with an enviable easiness in a bullpen session at Fitch Park.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's living in luxury with multiple closers

A's living in luxury with multiple closers

MESA, Ariz. -- With four closing options in tow, A's manager Bob Melvin isn't opposed to picking more than one ahead of Opening Day.

"We might not have one particular closer," Melvin said Wednesday. "You saw the way bullpens were used in the postseason. Now, it's easier to do it in the postseason with days off, but we have the luxury here … we may do things a bit differently here."

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gray eager for World Baseball Classic

Gray eager for World Baseball Classic

MESA, Ariz. -- There was already plenty reason for the A's to keep close watch on their ace this spring, and now even more so, with Sonny Gray electing to participate in the World Baseball Classic.

Gray's first official spring bullpen session in front of organizational faces was moved up a few days -- he will throw off the mound on Wednesday instead of Friday -- as he readies for a potential trip to San Diego to join Team USA mid-March.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phegley returning to full strength

A's catcher ready to bounce back from injury-riddled 2016 season

Phegley returning to full strength

MESA, Ariz. -- A's catcher Josh Phegley, hardly seen on the field last year because of recurring right knee issues, is back to his regularly scheduled programming just in time for camp's christening.

Phegley appeared in just 26 games during an injury-riddled 2016 campaign that got away from him quickly. What was supposed to be a mild procedure to remove a cruciate ligament cyst was instead just the beginning of a lengthy rehab journey.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's open spring camp with fresh outlook

A's open spring camp with fresh outlook

With Spring Training fast approaching, MLB.com will take a look at a different aspect of this year's Athletics squad each day this week. Today's topic: Spring Training is here.

MESA, Ariz. -- The A's return to the field this week when pitchers and catchers hold their first workout Wednesday, offering an early glimpse at what could be the strength of this club.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's camp preview: 25-man roster prediction

A's camp preview: 25-man roster prediction

With Spring Training fast approaching, MLB.com takes a look at a different aspect of this year's Athletics squad each day this week. Today's topic: Predicting the 25-man roster.

OAKLAND -- Hardly ever do things go according to plan for clubs during the spring season. Injuries wreak havoc on roster plans, and eye-opening showings from players not expected to break camp on a big league roster often change minds.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Five iconic moments from Yo's first 5 years in the Majors

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Five iconic moments from Yo's first 5 years in the Majors

On Feb. 13, 2012 -- exactly five years ago today -- the Athletics agreed to a four-year, $36 million deal with an outfielder from Cuba named Yoenis Cespedes. Maybe it was because of his years of success in the Cuban League, or his .458 average at the 2009 World Baseball Classic. Maybe it was his ability to both lift an incredible amount of weights and immaculately roast a pig.

Whatever convinced the A's to sign Yo, we're very glad they did, because it's given us five years of dingers, cars and Disney homages. So, to show thanks, we've put together five of Cespedes' most iconic moments -- one for each year of his already unforgettable career.

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A's promise to make 2017 interesting

Melvin: Oakland 'not afraid' of being underdogs

A's promise to make 2017 interesting

With Spring Training fast approaching, MLB.com will take a look at a different aspect of this year's Athletics squad each day this week. Today's topic: The perfect season.

OAKLAND -- The 2017 A's season won't be perfect but it could be perfectly interesting should this squad manage to put on a surprisingly good showing.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue epitomized contributions by African-Americans

Blue epitomized contributions by African-Americans

OAKLAND -- The annual celebration of Black History Month offers time for reflection and recognition of the contributions made by African-Americans, a tradition that extends to Major League Baseball.

Faces new and old have emerged from the A's Twitter account this month in celebration of black history and African-American players who have worn the green and gold: Rickey Henderson, Tony Phillips, Dave Stewart, Dave Henderson and Coco Crisp are among those to have been featured. Countless other African-American players have made their marks in Oakland, notably Vida Blue. 

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Five A's will represent 5 countries in Classic

Gray, Axford, Hendriks, Casilla, Davis make teams

Five A's will represent 5 countries in Classic

OAKLAND -- The A's will be well represented in the World Baseball Classic, with five members of their active roster playing for as many countries. In addition, four of their Minor Leaguers are also set to participate in the tournament.

Pitchers Sonny Gray (USA), John Axford (Canada), Liam Hendriks (Australia) and Santiago Casilla (Dominican Republic), and outfielder Khris Davis (Mexico) are confirmed on their respective rosters, which were made official Wednesday. They will report to Spring Training with the A's next week, before joining their national teams in early March.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.