Inbox: Who will comprise back end of A's rotation?

Beat reporter Jane Lee fields questions from Oakland fans this offseason

Inbox: Who will comprise back end of A's rotation?

What will the rotation look like in 2015? Out of Chris Bassitt, Sean Nolin and Kendall Graveman, who has the best chance to be in the mix on Opening Day?
-- Chris H., Orinda, Calif.

It's hard to say, since Sonny Gray and Scott Kazmir are seemingly the only two we can consider as certainties at this point. It's very likely that Jesse Chavez and Drew Pomeranz slot in behind them, which would leave one of Bassitt, Nolin, Graveman and Arnold Leon to be the No. 5 starter. But it very much seems like the A's will go into Spring Training open to every possibility, so look for each of the aforementioned to be given an opportunity to make the rotation. The A's typically don't like to make roster decisions purely based on spring performance, but it seems they'll have to do just that next year, given the unfamiliarity that comes with so many new faces.

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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.

MLB.com Columnist

Bernie Pleskoff

Scouting profile: A's shortstop prospect Daniel Robertson

Scouting profile: A's shortstop prospect Daniel Robertson

Oakland Athletics infielder Daniel Robertson -- the club's top-ranked prospect according to MLB.com -- had an outstanding career at Upland High School in Southern California. In his senior year, he hit .560 with six home runs and 41 RBIs. He had converted to playing shortstop after playing third base in his first three years. In his final season he also walked 29 times in 28 games while striking out only six times. He signed a letter of intent to attend UCLA.

In the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, the Athletics chose standout prospect Addison Russell with their first selection at No. 11 overall. Then the team picked Robertson with a supplemental selection at No. 34. He signed a contract and began playing professionally with the Athletics' Arizona League club in the summer of 2012. He later moved to the team's Class A Short Season Vermont club to finish the season. He finished his rookie year hitting a combined .241 with 12 doubles, two triples and five home runs. He drove in 30 runs.

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Bernie Pleskoff has served as a professional scout for the Houston Astros and Seattle Mariners. Follow @BerniePleskoff on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Winter Meetings featured more roster turnover for A's

After getting younger with Moss, Samardzija deals, additional new parts could be on the way

Winter Meetings featured more roster turnover for A's

SAN DIEGO -- After stumbling to the finish line and making another early postseason departure, the A's quickly assessed their own parts, evaluated those of their rivals, and in taking a realistic look at both, opted for a complete offseason makeover.

"This is how it is here," said general manager Billy Beane. "Every time we've done it, we're trying to be proactive. You have to be realistic. It's not necessarily just a reflection on our team, but also recognizing who your competition is.

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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 trade for Rockies Rule 5 Draft pick Canha

Minor League slugger expected to see time at first base, left field for Oakland

A's trade for Rockies Rule 5 Draft pick Canha

SAN DIEGO -- The A's made one final trade at the Winter Meetings on Thursday morning, acquiring first baseman/outfielder Mark Canha from the Rockies in exchange for Minor League right-hander Austin House and cash considerations.

Canha was selected by Colorado in the Rule 5 Draft from Miami shortly before the deal was made. Per Rule 5 Draft rules, Canha must remain on the A's active 25-man roster for the full season, or be offered back to the Marlins for $25,000.

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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.

Lawrie visits girl who cried over his trade to A's

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Lawrie visits girl who cried over his trade to A's

Free agent signings, three-team trades and speculation about the next set of moves can make MLB's Hot Stove season ... dramatic.

Billy Beane and the Athletics jumped into the deep end of the water before the Winter Meetings had even arrived, sending All-Star third baseman Josh Donaldson to the Blue Jays for Brett Lawrie and a trio of prospects. While players and analysts alike offered animated reactions to the deal, no one was as emotional one six year old Blue Jays fan.

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Zito set on comeback, will audition in January

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Zito set on comeback, will audition in January

You've probably seen Moneyball 17 times by now, so you're surely aware that in 2002, Barry Zito went 23-5 with a 2.75 ERA over 35 starts for the first-place Athletics. He was 24.

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A's quiet on final full day of Winter Meetings

A's quiet on final full day of Winter Meetings

SAN DIEGO -- After grabbing all of the headlines in the early goings of these Winter Meetings, the retooling A's have slowly but surely eased their way out of the spotlight.

Two significant trades in as many days, with Brandon Moss moving to Cleveland on Monday and Jeff Samardzija returning home to Chicago the following morning, was followed by utter silence on Wednesday, as general manager Billy Beane and Co. prepared to return home without making much more of a peep.

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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 deal Samardzija to White Sox for 4 players

Oakland also trades away Ynoa while acquiring Semien, Bassitt, Phegley, Ravelo

A's deal Samardzija to White Sox for 4 players

SAN DIEGO -- The A's traded their third All-Star in 11 days and fourth in a span of five months on Tuesday morning, sending right-hander Jeff Samardzija to the White Sox in exchange for four players to kick off Day 2 of the Winter Meetings.

They also packaged right-hander Michael Ynoa to Chicago and received infielders Marcus Semien and Rangel Ravelo, right-hander Chris Bassitt and catcher Josh Phegley in return.

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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 trio named to Fall League's Top Prospects Team

Most Valuable Player Greg Bird leads young stars following AFL season

A's trio named to Fall League's Top Prospects Team

The Arizona Fall League on Wednesday announced its 2014 Top Prospects Team, highlighted by league Most Valuable Player Greg Bird and baseball's top prospect Byron Buxton.

The 22-man Top Prospects Team includes at least one player from 16 Major League organizations. The Fall League managers and coaches voted on the team, taking into consideration the players' performances during the fall and their projected future in the Major Leagues.

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

After flurry of deals, Beane still not finished with roster

After flurry of deals, Beane still not finished with roster

SAN DIEGO -- After turning his roster upside down, A's general manager Billy Beane is ready to put the pieces back together with an eye not just on 2015, but beyond.

Beane ushered in Day 2 of the Winter Meetings by trading yet another of his 2014 All-Stars. Having already subtracted from his lineup, dealing Josh Donaldson and Brandon Moss, he took away from his rotation this time, sending Jeff Samardzija to the White Sox on Tuesday.

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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.

MLB.com Columnist

Jim Callis

Semien poised to make quickest Majors impact

Shortstop acquired with Phegley, Bassitt, Ravelo by A's in deal with White Sox

Semien poised to make quickest Majors impact

SAN DIEGO -- Another frontline Athletics starter changed addresses on Tuesday morning. Jeff Samardzija returned to Chicago, this time to the White Sox, in a deal that also featured five young players.

Oakland acquired infielder Marcus Semien, catcher Josh Phegley, right-hander Chris Bassitt and first baseman Rangel Ravelo in exchange for Samardzija and righty Michael Ynoa.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com and writes a blog, Callis' Corner. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Samardzija trade the latest in Beane's busy offseason

A's GM has dealt 'Shark,' Donaldson, Moss while stockpiling young talent

Samardzija trade the latest in Beane's busy offseason

SAN DIEGO -- This isn't the time to try to make sense out of Billy Beane's frenzied offseason activity. The A's general manager, who has already traded Josh Donaldson and Brandon Moss after signing Billy Butler to a three-year deal, a seemingly contradictory set of moves, showed he has much more up his sleeve on Tuesday.

The A's acquired right-handed pitcher Chris Bassitt, catcher Josh Phegley and infielders Rangel Ravelo and Marcus Semien from the White Sox in exchange for right-handed pitchers Jeff Samardzija and Michael Ynoa.

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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 acquire infielder Wendle from Indians for Moss

A's acquire infielder Wendle from Indians for Moss

SAN DIEGO -- Yet another big bat is headed out of Oakland, with Brandon Moss on his way to Cleveland in a trade that brought Minor League second baseman Joe Wendle to the A's on Monday.

Moss' departure comes less than two weeks after Josh Donaldson was traded to the Blue Jays. The All-Star corner infielders combined for 54 home runs in each of the past two seasons in green and gold.

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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 Spring Training tour part of charity auction items

A's Spring Training tour part of charity auction items

SAN DIEGO -- For a third consecutive year, the A's are offering unique experiences to be auctioned online to help raise awareness and funds for cancer research.

These efforts are part of a league-wide initiative that was inspired by the numerous employees, friends and fans of the game who have been affected by cancer.

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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.

MLB.com Columnist

Bernie Pleskoff

A's net steady player from Indians in Wendle

Left-handed-hitting second baseman has ability to hit ball to all fields

A's net steady player from Indians in Wendle

SAN DIEGO -- Dealing from a deep inventory of middle infielders, the Indians acquired first baseman/outfielder/designated hitter Brandon Moss from the Athletics on Monday for highly regarded second-base prospect Joe Wendle.

There may be those who question whether Wendle was enough of a return from Cleveland for the left-handed-hitting Moss. However, those who have watched Wendle play regularly have high praise for the 5-foot-11, 190-pound left-handed-hitting second baseman.

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Bernie Pleskoff has served as a professional scout for the Houston Astros and Seattle Mariners. Follow @BerniePleskoff on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Bernie Pleskoff

Pleskoff: Bassitt has repertoire of starter

Pleskoff: Bassitt has repertoire of starter

Recently acquired Oakland Athletics pitching prospect Chris Bassitt is a long and lean right-hander with the ability to start or pitch in relief.

Bassitt was acquired by Oakland from the Chicago White Sox in a six-player trade on Tuesday. Right-handed pitchers Jeff Samardzija and Michael Ynoa were sent to the White Sox in exchange for catcher Josh Phegley, first baseman Rangel Ravelo, infielder Marcus Semien and Bassitt.

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Bernie Pleskoff has served as a professional scout for the Houston Astros and Seattle Mariners. Follow @BerniePleskoff on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Trio of A's help bring holiday cheer to Oakland school kids

Trio of A's help bring holiday cheer to Oakland school kids

OAKLAND -- A's pitchers Sonny Gray, Dan Otero and Drew Pomeranz sure know how to help throw a party.

The three players were on hand at the Oakland Zoo on Thursday to welcome in local children for a holiday party annually hosted by the A's Community Fund. The players signed hundreds of autographs and were stopped for just as many pictures by the 220 students in attendance from Parker Elementary School in Oakland.

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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.

Prep shortstop Rodgers leads 2015 Draft class

Duke's Matuella, 2014 top pick Aiken follow Florida high school infielder on Top 50 list

Prep shortstop Rodgers leads 2015 Draft class

For the second time in their history, the Arizona Diamondbacks own the top pick in the First-Year Player Draft. The first time that happened, in 2005, they took a high school shortstop with a potent bat.

Ten years after grabbing Justin Upton, the D-backs could follow a similar path. Lake Mary (Fla.) High School shortstop Brendan Rodgers sits atop MLBPipeline.com's initial Draft Top 50 rankings, thanks to his three plus tools (bat, power, arm) complemented by two solid ones (speed, defense). Unlike Upton, who immediately moved to the outfield as a professional, Rodgers should remain at shortstop.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com and writes a blog, Callis' Corner. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's agree to one-year deals with Davis, Rodriguez

A's agree to one-year deals with Davis, Rodriguez

OAKLAND -- The A's agreed to one-year deals for the 2015 season with first baseman Ike Davis and right-hander Fernando Rodriguez, agreeing to terms with the two players to avoid arbitration.

The club also tendered contracts to its remaining 12 arbitration-eligible players but non-tendered first baseman Kyle Blanks and outfielder Andrew Brown, both of whom were designated for assignment last week.

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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.

Lawrie ready for new beginning in Oakland

Not trying to fill Donaldson's shoes, third baseman aims to stay healthy, show what he can do

Lawrie ready for new beginning in Oakland

OAKLAND -- The comparisons will linger for some time, and Josh Donaldson will likely trump Brett Lawrie in most talking points, at least through the offseason. But these two third basemen, who swapped uniforms -- and countries -- in a blockbuster trade between the A's and Blue Jays last week, do share a commonality.

They're similar in style, both hard-nosed gamers who aren't afraid to get dirty. Lawrie prides himself on this, and is otherwise uninterested in entertaining any questions about how he's going to replace the A's best player.

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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.

Reddick swapped numbers with Butler for a winch

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Reddick swapped numbers with Butler for a winch

More than your name or Twitter handle, nothing defines your identity as a baseball player quite like your uniform number. And when a player joins a new team and his preferred number is in conflict with a new teammate, there are three options to resolve the matter: 

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A's announce Minor League coaching staffs

OAKLAND -- The A's have pieced together their 2015 Minor League coaching assignments, announcing the full staff on Tuesday.

Plenty familiar faces are back, and some in new positions.

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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.

MLB.com Columnist

Richard Justice

A's can still contend now, even while building for future

Donaldson trade reminiscent of 2011 moves, but Beane could add big name to strong core

A's can still contend now, even while building for future

Three years ago, Billy Beane rebuilt the A's. He didn't use those exact words, but that was the bottom line.

In three separate deals, Beane traded away three former All-Star pitchers -- Trevor Cahill, Gio Gonzalez and Andrew Bailey -- for a bunch of younger players.

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Richard Justice is a columnist for MLB.com. Read his blog, Justice4U. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's making most Hot Stove noise in AL West

A's making most Hot Stove noise in AL West

The first few weeks of the Hot Stove season have been busy, but there is still plenty of more action to come.

The A's have been the biggest movers and shakers in the American League West thus far, making the largest free-agent signing of the winter in the division and trading away arguably their best player. Meanwhile, the Rangers and Angels have been mentioned in a number of rumors, while the Astros will look to build on their 19-win improvement of a season ago and the Mariners hope to end their 14-year postseason drought.

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A's send Donaldson to Blue Jays for Lawrie

Oakland also adds three prospects from Toronto in deal for All-Star third baseman

A's send Donaldson to Blue Jays for Lawrie

OAKLAND -- In a shocking trade that sets the stage for a potential rebuilding movement, the A's shipped All-Star third baseman Josh Donaldson to the Blue Jays on Friday evening in exchange for four players, including Brett Lawrie.

The other three are prospects: right-hander Kendall Graveman, lefty Sean Nolin and shortstop Franklin Barreto.

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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 may have Shark bait dangling for possible trade

White Sox and Braves have been linked to Oakland righty Samardzija

A's may have Shark bait dangling for possible trade

OAKLAND -- Less than 24 hours after parting with All-Star third baseman Josh Donaldson, shipped to Toronto on Friday evening for four players in a blockbuster trade, the A's appear primed to continue dealing.

Right-hander Jeff Samardzija has been at the forefront of a flurry of continuing trade rumors involving the Athletics, with multiple reports linking the pitcher to both the White Sox and Braves.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Richard Justice

Beane not afraid to take a chance to make A's better

Trading Donaldson a risk, but Oakland always makes the offseason more interesting

Beane not afraid to take a chance to make A's better

If you're wondering what Billy Beane has in mind for the Oakland A's, don't waste your time. Besides, why spoil the surprise?

This isn't a trade that's easy to grasp. On the other hand, that's the beauty of watching the A's work. Sometime between now and Opening Day, there'll probably be an understanding of how Beane saw his roster fitting together.

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Richard Justice is a columnist for MLB.com. Read his blog, Justice4U. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Tracy Ringolsby

Don't call Donaldson an underdog

Former first-round Draft pick consistently produced in Cubs, A's organizations

Don't call Donaldson an underdog

Josh Donaldson has become one of the game's elite players. Surprised? Don't be.

Somewhere along the line, Donaldson has emerged as the hero of the underdog, portrayed as an overlooked player who made himself good. Wrong.

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

Donaldson tweets heartfelt goodbye to A's fans

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Donaldson tweets heartfelt goodbye to A's fans

One day after Thanksgiving, Josh Donaldson found himself expressing gratitude to his fans in Oakland -- just not in the way he had probably expected.

Having already tweeted this out, probably before diving in to a massive pile of food:

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