OAKLAND -- Less than 24 hours after the Oakland Raiders and Arizona Cardinals finished their NFL exhibition game at the Coliseum, the A's and Rangers were set to begin the first game of their three-game series Friday night at the multi-sport facility.
The field, understandably, was less than pristine. The yard markers and lines from Thursday night's football game, which didn't end until around 10:30 p.m. PT, were still visible, although they were spray-painted green. The outfield grass took a particularly hard hit because of temporary stands that covered the deeper parts of the field.
"I've played on it before after a football game," A's center fielder Ryan Sweeney said. "The grounds crew does the best they can, but there's only so much they can do. It just gets torn up, and there's not really a whole lot of grass and it almost turns into sand out there, so you just really don't know where it's going to bounce. So it's tough. You've got to watch the ball into your glove, obviously."
Right fielder David DeJesus, a former member of the Royals, said he's played a game at the Coliseum with Kansas City a few days after a football game, but never the day after. He expects to get some crazy bounces in the outfield.
"Those are going to happen," DeJesus said. "As an outfield unit, we just have to make sure we see the ball in, don't try to do too crazy of a thing out there. Look it into your glove and hit the cutoff man. That's all you can do here."
Because the grounds crew had so much work to do, neither the A's nor Rangers took batting practice on the field before the game. Both teams hit in the cages.
"I was here at noon and looked at it and couldn't believe it would be ready," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "Tip your hat to the people who got this done."