Game of inches proves frustrating for A's

Game of inches proves frustrating for A's

MINNEAPOLIS -- The A's were reminded just how cruel this game of inches can be on more than one occasion Monday night. By the end of it, they were staring down a one-run loss in Minneapolis, their beleaguered bullpen disappointing yet again.

Oakland's 8-7 loss to the Twins could've had a different ending, though.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

#ASGWorthy: Vogt's bat a strong campaigner

#ASGWorthy: Vogt's bat a strong campaigner

The ballot to elect players to the 2015 All-Star Game in Cincinnati is set, and Stephen Vogt is letting his bat serve as his campaign manager in his early push.

The A's catcher, who showed he was #ASGWorthy by crushing a grand slam to right field off Minnesota's Phil Hughes on Monday night, has already hit seven home runs and driven in 25 RBIs. He's got a .372 batting average to go along with it.

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Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's homers not enough to stop Twins

A's homers not enough to stop Twins

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins extended their winning streak to five games, as they erased an early four-run deficit with Torii Hunter coming through with a go-ahead three-run homer in the sixth inning in an 8-7 win over the A's on Monday night at Target Field.

Twins right-hander Phil Hughes gave up a grand slam to Stephen Vogt just five batters into the game, but settled down from there. After the Twins rallied with four runs in the second to tie it, Hughes gave up a go-ahead run on a solo shot to Mark Canha in the sixth.

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Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Reddick earns share of AL Player of the Week honor

Reddick earns share of AL Player of the Week honor

MINNEAPOLIS -- The A's Josh Reddick has been named co-American League Player of the Week with Houston's Jose Altuve, marking the third such career honor for Oakland's right fielder.

"That's a nice honor to have. A feather in your cap," said A's manager Bob Melvin. "Really hasn't been a week for us. He's been swinging it well the whole season. It would be nice to see him get a few more of those."

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

O'Flaherty's MRI shows no structural damage

Reliever shut down indefinitely with inflammation in left shoulder

O'Flaherty's MRI shows no structural damage

MINNEAPOLIS -- An MRI on A's reliever Eric O'Flaherty's left shoulder revealed no structural damage. The southpaw was diagnosed with inflammation and irritation in the joint and will be shut down indefinitely.

O'Flaherty, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list on Saturday, won't begin throwing again until his range of motion and strength improves, leaving the A's with just one left-hander in their bullpen -- Fernando Abad -- until further notice.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Chavez hopes to play cooler against Twins

Chavez hopes to play cooler against Twins

A's catcher Stephen Vogt, who has three home runs in his last two games and a team-high seven for the season, will be back behind the plate Tuesday to catch right-hander Jesse Chavez against the host Twins, who will counter with righty Trevor May at Target Field. Minnesota is looking to pick up its sixth straight win as the club tries to climb the American League Central ranks.

Vogt hit a grand slam and an RBI double in the first game of this four-game set on Monday, giving him 25 RBIs in 25 games.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Melvin thrilled for former player Counsell

A's skipper happy to see good friend take the helm in Milwaukee

Melvin thrilled for former player Counsell

MINNEAPOLIS -- A's manager Bob Melvin was absolutely thrilled to hear of good friend and former player Craig Counsell's Monday hiring as the Brewers' new manager.

"Extremely happy for Craig Counsell," said Melvin, who managed Counsell from 2005-06 in Arizona.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Vogt cranks pair of homers in A's win in Texas

Vogt cranks pair of homers in A's win in Texas

ARLINGTON -- A's catcher Stephen Vogt hit a pair of home runs, driving in four runs in support of battery mate Sonny Gray, who compiled 6 2/3 scoreless innings in a 7-1 series-clinching win over the Rangers at Globe Life Park on Sunday afternoon.

Oakland outfielder Josh Reddick also homered, launching a two-run shot to center field in the ninth for his second hit of the day, with his career-high hitting streak extending to 11 games. He's 19-for-38 in that span.

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Christian Corona is a contributor to MLB.com. Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB reveals 30 Honorary Bat Girl winners

MLB reveals 30 Honorary Bat Girl winners

Mother's Day is Sunday, and for Melissa Rupert of Liberty Township, Ohio, it will be the first one to celebrate as the mother of a baby boy named Noah.

"He's my entire world," Rupert said. "Every day, I hold my baby boy as tightly as he'll let me and remind myself that he is my rock and my joy, and I barely think about ... breast cancer."

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Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. Read and join other baseball fans on his MLB.com community blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gray baffles Rangers, even without best stuff

Gray baffles Rangers, even without best stuff

ARLINGTON -- That A's right-hander Sonny Gray tossed 6 2/3 scoreless innings in Arlington on Sunday afternoon was no revelation. That he did it despite walking a career-high seven batters and fanning 10 on a career-high 119 pitches only further exposed his brilliance on the mound.

"Sonny doesn't have anything, he's still one of the best pitchers in baseball," said catcher Stephen Vogt, who homered twice in the 7-1 win over the Rangers. "He did not feel good today, and that's an understatement. He was not himself. The ball wasn't moving like it normally does. Didn't have a sinker. Didn't have a fastball, for that matter. Kinda just threw whatever he was throwing. He's just so good at manipulating the ball and making it move when he doesn't feel good."

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Vogt, Reddick carrying A's offense

Vogt, Reddick carrying A's offense

ARLINGTON -- The Ben Zobrist-less, Coco Crisp-less A's offense is managing just fine these days, much thanks to a pair of players who can't seem to stop hitting.

Josh Reddick and Stephen Vogt, sandwiching temporary cleanup man Mark Canha on Sunday, combined for four hits -- three of them home runs -- and six RBIs in the A's 7-1 win over the Rangers.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's shake up beleaguered bullpen

A's shake up beleaguered bullpen

ARLINGTON -- A beleaguered A's bullpen obtained another reinforcement for Sunday's series finale in Arlington by way of right-hander Chad Smith, who was promoted from Triple-A Nashville to replace the demoted Ryan Cook.

The move comes less than 24 hours after A's relievers -- carrying a 4.81 ERA -- blew a four-run lead and suffered their Major League-leading eighth loss of the season, with Cook responsible for the winning run.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Reddick's four-RBI night not enough for A's

Reddick's four-RBI night not enough for A's

ARLINGTON -- Shin-Soo Choo homered and doubled in game-changing innings for the Rangers, who got a walk-off base hit from Rougned Odor against A's reliever R.J. Alvarez in the 10th inning for an 8-7 Texas victory at Globe Life Park on Saturday night to even this series.

Choo opened the 10th with a double off right-hander Ryan Cook, who proceeded to walk each of his next two batters. That prompted A's manager Bob Melvin to bring in Alvarez -- recalled earlier in the day -- with none out to face Odor, who delivered the game-winning hit off the glove of shortstop Marcus Semien.

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Christian Corona is a contributor to MLB.com. Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mark Canha singles off umpire, begins inning of chaos

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Mark Canha singles off umpire, begins inning of chaos

The seventh inning of Saturday's A's-Rangers game began with Ike Davis reaching first base on an error. Brett Lawrie singled in the next at-bat to give Oakland a pair of runners. And then Mark Canha thwacked a pitch right into second base umpire Jerry Meals' left hip. Thus began the inning of chaos.

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A's bullpen unravels in 10-inning loss

A's bullpen unravels in 10-inning loss

ARLINGTON -- The A's bullpen continues to sink this team, unable to provide the shutdown innings they so easily cruised through last year.

On Saturday, Oakland's relievers blew a four-run lead in a 10-inning, 8-7 loss to the Rangers, who scored five times after starter Drew Pomeranz's exit. It's the bullpen's eighth loss of the season already, most in the Majors -- and more than the first-place Astros have as a team.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Speedster Burns rejoins A's; Ross designated

Speedster Burns rejoins A's; Ross designated

ARLINGTON -- Speedster Billy Burns rejoined the A's for Saturday's matchup in Arlington, getting a start in center field while manning leadoff duties against the Rangers.

His return, which allows the A's to rest a struggling Sam Fuld, prompted the organization to designate Cody Ross for assignment. Ross' 40-man roster spot went to outfielder Alex Hassan, reclaimed off waivers by the A's for a third time in six months.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

O'Flaherty to DL, Alvarez recalled

O'Flaherty to DL, Alvarez recalled

ARLINGTON -- The A's placed reliever Eric O'Flaherty on the disabled list with a left shoulder strain Saturday and recalled right-hander R.J. Alvarez from Triple-A Nashville to take his bullpen spot.

O'Flaherty flew home Saturday and will undergo an MRI in the Bay Area on Sunday. The southpaw allowed a combined six runs in his last three appearances, getting six days of rest between his final two to rest his shoulder.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Crazy eighth: A's battle back with 7-run inning

Lawrie delivers go-ahead double off Texas' closer; Canha's HR sparks rally

Crazy eighth: A's battle back with 7-run inning

ARLINGTON -- The A's staged a comeback for the second time in as many days Friday. Only on this night, they completed it.

Their 7-5 victory over the Rangers to jumpstart a 10-game road trip was badly needed for a club that had dropped six of its last seven games. That it came in such spirited fashion only made it sweeter.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Canha, Lawrie spark A's wild comeback win

Canha, Lawrie spark A's wild comeback win

ARLINGTON -- The Athletics scored seven runs in the eighth inning and rallied for a 7-5 victory over the Rangers on Friday night.

The Rangers led 5-0 going into the eighth after getting six innings from starter Colby Lewis and one from reliever Alex Claudio. But Mark Canha led off the inning with his third home run of the season to get the Athletics started against Rangers reliever Shawn Tolleson.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Crisp begins rehab work with Class A Stockton

Outfielder recovering from elbow surgery, could rejoin A's next week

Crisp begins rehab work with Class A Stockton

ARLINGTON -- The A's hope to have Coco Crisp back in the outfield by the time they return home.

The veteran outfielder, who underwent right elbow surgery four weeks ago, could be activated during the club's 10-game road trip, A's manager Bob Melvin said Friday, prior to the opener of a three-game set with the Rangers.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's do their part to support local youth

Club active with multiple initiatives geared toward Bay Area youngsters

A's do their part to support local youth

OAKLAND -- The A's Community Fund has long invested in the Bay Area's future, supporting this mission through several programs and donations that particularly focus on the community's youth.

Youth baseball is very much alive in the Bay, and the A's are doing their part to sustain its growth. Each Sunday home game, the A's select a youth baseball or softball team to join Oakland's players on the field during the national anthem, with each participant receiving an autographed baseball as a souvenir for the unique experience.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

24-years-ago, Rickey Henderson broke Brock's record

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24-years-ago, Rickey Henderson broke Brock's record

Before Rickey Henderson came along, Hall of Famer Lou Brock held the MLB all-time career steals record with 938 over his 19 years in the bigs. 

On May 1, 1991, Henderson stole third against the Yankees to pass Brock and take over sole possession of the record.

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A's ready to leave April behind them

Oakland loses series to Angels, drops to five games below .500

A's ready to leave April behind them

OAKLAND -- An "awful homestand," as Oakland manager Bob Melvin deemed it, and a rather forgettable month of April is behind the A's. That's the good news.

"It's been frustrating, especially the way the spring went," said starter Jesse Chavez, who allowed four runs in five innings in Thursday's 6-5 loss to the Angels. "At the same time, it's baseball. You're going to have high months, you're going to have down months.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's rally not enough in series finale

A's rally not enough in series finale

OAKLAND -- Mike Trout robbed A's first baseman Ike Davis of a game-winning hit with a remarkable catch in center field to close the book on a 6-5 Angels victory at the Coliseum in Thursday's series finale.

Davis, who lined a ball Trout's way with the bases loaded off of Angels closer Huston Street, said he was "hoping it was" over his head.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's bullpen waiting to hit stride

A's bullpen waiting to hit stride

OAKLAND -- Three late runs were charged to A's reliever Ryan Cook in Wednesday night's 6-3 loss to the Angels. But make no mistake, it was a group effort.

Oakland's bullpen has had a tough April, with its latest struggles coming in the seventh inning on Wednesday. Cook set an ominous tone when he issued a leadoff walk to Matt Joyce, who is batting .143 this year.

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Alex Espinoza is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's rally, but Trout helps Angels escape

A's rally, but Trout helps Angels escape

OAKLAND -- Faint "MVP!" chants could be heard at the Coliseum on Wednesday night, moments after Mike Trout extended the Angels' lead with another well-struck line drive. One night after an 0-for-4, three-strikeout performance, the superstar center fielder came back with a vengeance, blasting a 454-foot home run in the third and a two-run double in the seventh to lead the Angels to a 6-3 win over the A's.

Matt Shoemaker, pitching on eight days' rest after being placed on the bereavement list, departed the game with two outs and a one-run lead in the sixth, but A's right fielder Josh Reddick lined an RBI single off Cesar Ramos to tie the game at 3. The next half-inning, though, Johnny Giavotella hit an RBI single up the middle off Ryan Cook and Trout added a bases-loaded double off Evan Scribner two batters later to give the Angels a 6-3 lead.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Alex Espinoza is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.