Inbox: Roster expansion will likely include Triple-A pitchers

Beat reporter Jane Lee answers fans' questions

Inbox: Roster expansion will likely include Triple-A pitchers

A's beat reporter Jane Lee answers fans' pressing pitching questions -- and more.

Who do you think will be called up when rosters expand? Please tell me Barry Zito will finally get to pitch in Oakland. I don't think anyone understands why he keeps getting passed over, and I'd love to see him in the green and gold again.
-- Kristina M., Livermore, Calif.

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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 can't capitalize on promising start off Felix

A's can't capitalize on promising start off Felix

SEATTLE -- Nelson Cruz clubbed his Major League-leading 39th home run and Felix Hernandez pitched eight innings of two-run ball to win his 15th game of the season, an 8-2 decision over the A's on Wednesday as the Mariners wrapped up a series win at Safeco Field.

Hernandez gave up a leadoff homer to Billy Burns and a seventh-inning shot to Brett Lawrie, but allowed just those two runs and three hits with one walk and seven strikeouts. Hernandez (15-8, 3.66) had an 8.48 ERA over his previous five starts, but he dominated the A's to move into a tie with Dallas Keuchel of the Astros for the most wins in the American League.

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Greg Johns and Jane Lee are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Burns' first-pitch strategy keeps paying off

Burns' first-pitch strategy keeps paying off

SEATTLE -- For as many unpredictable happenings that have occurred during a tumultuous season for the A's, there are certain events that have simply come to be expected.

Billy Burns swinging at the first pitch is one of them.

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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.

Foot improving, Doubront in line to make next start

Foot improving, Doubront in line to make next start

SEATTLE -- Left-hander Felix Doubront is on track to make his next scheduled start in Arizona on Saturday, A's manager Bob Melvin said Wednesday.

Doubront, who suffered a right foot contusion after taking a comebacker in Seattle on Monday, showed enough improvement when running and throwing Wednesday for Melvin to say as much.

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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.

#TBT: Rickey Henderson sets single-season SB record

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#TBT: Rickey Henderson sets single-season SB record

By now, even the most casual baseball fans know that Rickey Henderson was -- and, if mascots are to be believed, still is -- one fast dude. But it bears repeating just how crazy Henderson's dominance on the basepaths was, because the numbers look like they came out of a video game. Case in point: Lou Brock, number two on the all-time steals list, is closer to Carl Crawford in 44th place (!) than he is to Rickey.

And, if your mind still isn't sufficiently blown, there's this: On August 27, 1982, Henderson set a new single-season record by swiping his 119th bag against the Brewers ... with 33 whole games left.

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Gray brings AL's best ERA into Arizona

Gray brings AL's best ERA into Arizona

The A's will have their ace on the mound for Friday's three-game series opener in Arizona, where Sonny Gray will be opposed by D-backs right-hander Chase Anderson in the 6:40 p.m. MT matchup at Chase Field.

Gray enters the contest with an American League-leading 2.10 ERA, the lowest mark by an AL pitcher since Pedro Martinez posted a 1.74 ERA with the Red Sox in 2000.

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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.

Bullpen rises to the occasion vs. M's

A's relief corps has 9 1/3 scoreless frames this series

Bullpen rises to the occasion vs. M's

SEATTLE -- The A's fell victim to yet another one-run loss Tuesday, a 6-5 defeat to the Mariners representing their 30th of the season, but not because of bullpen blunders that have affected so many of these close outcomes.

Rather, it was the bullpen that gave the club every opportunity to come out on top this time. The A's got 3 1/3 scoreless innings from Fernando Abad and Fernando Rodriguez in relief of right-hander Jesse Chavez, who was done in by consecutive three-run frames.

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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.

Semien homers, but A's can't hold early lead

Semien homers, but A's can't hold early lead

SEATTLE -- Robinson Cano became the first player in Major League history to open his career with 11 straight seasons with 30 doubles, and the Mariners came from behind to top the A's, 6-5, on Tuesday at Safeco Field.

"You've just got to keep fighting and competing," Cano said after Seattle (58-68) won for the second time in its past six games. "You've got teammates here and people that follow you all over. You help each other and play hard until the season's over ... just go out there and play hard every single day."

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Greg Johns and Jane Lee are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Oblique injury likely ends Graveman's season

A's right-hander won't even play catch for three to four weeks

Oblique injury likely ends Graveman's season

SEATTLE -- A's right-hander Kendall Graveman, who suffered a left oblique strain during his six-inning outing against the Rays on Sunday, is not expected to pitch again this season.

Manager Bob Melvin is not ready to say as much but hinted at the possibility, noting Graveman won't even be back to playing catch for another three or four weeks.

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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 name Washington 3B coach; Gallego dismissed

A's name Washington 3B coach; Gallego dismissed

SEATTLE -- Oakland reinstalled Ron Washington as its third-base coach Monday, dismissing longtime A's fixture Mike Gallego ahead of the club's series opener in Seattle.

Gallego was in his 19th season in the A's organization and seventh as third-base and infield coach, but he was under a microscope for much of the year in the wake of myriad defensive and baserunning issues -- including several over the weekend.

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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's hustle looms large in A's comeback

Outfielder legs out infield single as tying run scores ahead of go-ahead homer

Reddick's hustle looms large in A's comeback

SEATTLE -- Though their record may not reflect the type of resiliency that led to Monday's 11-5 victory in Seattle, the A's continue to showcase it with pride.

The last-place club rallied from behind in a big way for a second straight day, not only getting continued bursts of offensive production but, this time, one of the better bullpen performances of the season, too.

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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 spoil Iwakuma's no-hitter homecoming

A's spoil Iwakuma's no-hitter homecoming

SEATTLE -- In his first Safeco Field start since his no-hitter, Mariners right-hander Hisashi Iwakuma gave up seven runs in the fifth inning as the A's stormed from behind for an 11-5 win Monday night to snap an eight-game road losing streak.

Oakland starter Felix Doubront left the game after two innings with a bruised right foot after being hit by a Robinson Cano line drive and the Mariners immediately racked up five runs in the third off reliever Evan Scribner as Franklin Gutierrez and Mark Trumbo homered.

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Greg Johns is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Mariners Musings blog, and listen to his podcast. 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 find groove in 7-run 7th, surge past Rays

A's find groove in 7-run 7th, surge past Rays

OAKLAND -- The A's scored seven runs in a mammoth seventh inning Sunday, running away with an 8-2, come-from-behind win over the Rays and avoiding a three-game sweep at the Coliseum.

The Rays surged in front, 2-1, in the top of the seventh, scoring two runs off Sean Doolittle in the lefty's first appearance since May 27. But the A's were far from done, as eight straight batters reached base. Eric Sogard's two-run single gave the A's the lead for good, and Mark Canha's bases-clearing triple extend the lead to 7-2.

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Willie Bans is a contributor to MLB.com. Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jonathan Mayo

Healy, Wendle on MLB Pipeline's Prospect Team of the Week

Houston phenoms on list 20 times thus far, most of any team

Healy, Wendle on MLB Pipeline's Prospect Team of the Week

MLBPipeline.com's Prospect Team of the Week honors the best performances from the previous seven days. Any player currently on an organization Top 30 Prospects list on our Prospect Watch is eligible, including big leaguers.

The Houston Astros might be the feel-good surprise story in the big leagues, but let's not forget much of that has been built from within, taking advantage of one of the best farm systems in baseball.

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Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com and writes a blog, B3. Follow @JonathanMayo on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bats pick up Doolittle after shaky return to hill

A's lefty walks pair, allows 2 runs in first appearance since May

Bats pick up Doolittle after shaky return to hill

OAKLAND - Sean Doolittle's first game with the A's since May 27 -- and just second this season -- didn't go as planned, but Doolittle was still pleased to be back on the mound pitching in the Majors.

He gave up two earned runs on one hit and two walks before departing in the seventh after 2/3 of an inning and 23 pitches (12 strikes). Doolittle was on the hook before the A's rallied to score seven runs in the seventh en route to an 8-2 win over the Rays on Sunday.

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Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Valencia, battling leg tendinitis, returns to lineup

Valencia, battling leg tendinitis, returns to lineup

OAKLAND -- Danny Valencia returned to the A's lineup in Sunday's 8-3 win over the Rays, going 1-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored.

A's manager Bob Melvin said Valencia has been battling tendinitis in his lower right leg. On Saturday, it seemed as though Valencia might be out several games, but on Sunday Melvin said it's simply something the club has to monitor going forward.

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Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's ballboy saves his bullpen with diving stop

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A's ballboy saves his bullpen with diving stop

It's a trope as old as the action movie itself -- when things are their darkest, the protagonist nobly gives himself up, sacrificing one to save many. History echoes with their names: Clint EastwoodCommissioner GordonApu

To this illustrious list of the brave, we can now add this ballboy from Saturday's Rays-Athletics game. With a ground ball bearing down on the Oakland bullpen, there was little time to react, and our intrepid hero did the only thing he could to uphold his oath.

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Doolittle activated after lengthy shoulder rehab

'The arm just feels so much better,' A's lefty says

Doolittle activated after lengthy shoulder rehab

OAKLAND -- The A's celebrated the much-anticipated return of Sean Doolittle on Saturday, activating the lefty from the disabled list after his second lengthy rehab of the season.

Doolittle, who has nursed two separate shoulder injuries this year, including a strain that put him back on the DL in May, returns following an encouraging rehab assignment with Triple-A Nashville.

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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.

Gray misses out on 13th win as 'pen falters in 9th

Gray misses out on 13th win as 'pen falters in 9th

OAKLAND -- Asdrubal Cabrera homered and drove in the winning runs of a 5-4 Rays victory over the A's with a two-run double in the ninth inning at the Coliseum on Saturday evening.

Tampa Bay trailed by one run entering the ninth against switch-pitcher Pat Venditte, who issued a one-out walk to Daniel Nava and gave up a double to Logan Forsythe, setting the stage for Cabrera's game-changing hit off lefty Drew Pomeranz. The Rays were 0-49 when trailing after eight innings entering the day.

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Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for 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.

Late-inning losses adding up to theme for '15

'They're tough, man,' A's starter Gray says after missing out on 13th win

Late-inning losses adding up to theme for '15

OAKLAND -- The A's late-inning losses continue to pile to new heights, as does the frustration that accompanies them.

A club aching for some mid-summer mojo was well on its way to a feel-good victory over the Rays in front of a sold-out crowd on Saturday evening until its bullpen imploded again in a 5-4 loss, denying American League ERA leader Sonny Gray (2.10) of his 13th victory after eight innings of three-run ball.

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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 can't find big hit to back Bassitt vs. Rays

A's can't find big hit to back Bassitt vs. Rays

OAKLAND -- Desmond Jennings homered and the Rays beat the A's, 2-1, in Friday's three-game series opener at the Coliseum behind lefty Drew Smyly, who tossed 5 2/3 scoreless innings to earn his first win of the season.

"Great win," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "I thought Drew Smyly really bounced back nicely, kind of like we thought he was going to."

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Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for 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.

Davis set for season-ending hip surgery

A's first baseman has torn labrum after months of discomfort

Davis set for season-ending hip surgery

OAKLAND -- A's first baseman Ike Davis will undergo season-ending left hip surgery next week.

The operation, which will repair a torn labrum, is scheduled for Thursday in Vail, Colo.

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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.

Canha adjusting, improving in first big league season

Canha adjusting, improving in first big league season

OAKLAND -- Growing up, Mark Canha was a shortstop and a pitcher, but once he got to high school, everyone wanted to play short, so he migrated to the outfield.

In Canha's sophomore season at University of California-Berkeley, the team needed a first baseman, so he made the switch.

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Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Chavez shows off stamina with stellar 8 frames

After battling fatigue last season, righty allows just two hits in lengthy start vs. Dodgers

Chavez shows off stamina with stellar 8 frames

OAKLAND -- The dog days of an already lost season have not treated the A's too kindly. And while the bright spots have proven fleeting, Jesse Chavez is on a mission to be a consistent one.

The right-hander dazzled in a 5-2 win over the Dodgers on Wednesday, helping the A's recover from an 0-7 road trip with a two-game sweep of one of baseball's best clubs by allowing just two hits across eight innings, matching a career high.

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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.

Yes, he Can-ha: Rookie has monster night vs. Dodgers

Yes, he Can-ha: Rookie has monster night vs. Dodgers

OAKLAND -- Not only did Mark Canha have a career-high four hits in the A's 5-4 walk-off win over the Dodgers on Tuesday, but he scored three runs including the game winner in the 10th.

"It's definitely the most memorable game we've played, for me," Canha said. "It's just been like kind of an emotional roller coaster ride this year, so to get a win like that in front of a big crowd made it really cool."

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Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Chavez leads A's to sweep of Dodgers

Chavez leads A's to sweep of Dodgers

OAKLAND -- Jesse Chavez allowed just two hits across eight innings, helping the A's top the Dodgers, 5-2, to complete a two-game sweep at the Coliseum on Wednesday afternoon.

Jimmy Rollins hit a two-run home run with two outs in the third, but Chavez didn't give up another hit until Kiké Hernandez's two-out double in the eighth. Chavez closed out the frame with his sixth strikeout of the day, completing a career-high-tying eight innings for the fourth time.

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

Butler walks off vs. Dodgers with double in 10th

Butler walks off vs. Dodgers with double in 10th

OAKLAND -- Billy Butler delivered a walk-off RBI double in the 10th, scoring Mark Canha and propelling the A's to a 5-4 win over the Dodgers on Tuesday in the first game of a two-game set at the Coliseum.

A.J. Ellis crushed a three-run blast in the eighth to give the Dodgers a 4-1 lead, but the A's stormed back with three of their own in the bottom of the frame, stringing together hits in five of six at-bats. Neither team scored a run in the ninth, but the A's improved to 5-9 in extra innings after Butler's timely hit.

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Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

McGwire: 'Great to be back' at Coliseum

McGwire: 'Great to be back' at Coliseum

OAKLAND -- In 1987, Mark McGwire crushed 49 homers in his rookie season, running away with American League Rookie of the Year honors and jumpstarting his historic career.

The A's honored that 1987 season by giving out McGwire bobbleheads Tuesday before their tilt against the Dodgers.

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Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Burns robs homer with leaping grab

Burns robs homer with leaping grab

BALTIMORE -- A's center fielder Billy Burns robbed Orioles slugger Chris Davis of a home run for the second out of the seventh inning in an otherwise rough 4-2 series-sweeping loss on Monday at Camden Yards.

Davis stepped to the plate having already slammed three home runs in the four-game series. He was denied a fourth -- and 35th of the season -- when Burns made a leaping grab at the wall in dead center just two innings after entering as a defensive replacement for the ejected Sam Fuld.

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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 unable to back Gray with bats, on defense

A's unable to back Gray with bats, on defense

BALTIMORE -- Facing one of baseball's premium pitchers on Monday, the Orioles continued to soar, using a key three-run homer from Steve Clevenger -- in a fourth inning that featured the first of three Oakland errors -- to hang on for a 4-2 win and a four-game sweep of the A's at Camden Yards.

The O's, who chased A's ace Sonny Gray after 5 2/3 innings, are in sole possession of the second American League Wild Card spot and have won 15 of their last 22.

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Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli, and listen to her podcast. Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.