Travis Blackley was greeted with a "Hey, rook" every few seconds on Wednesday afternoon, after news surfaced that, despite entering the season negated of rookie status, he indeed has it.
A player shall be considered a rookie unless, during a previous season, he has exceeded 50 innings pitched or accumulated more than 45 days on the active roster. Blackley came into the season with 34 2/3 innings pitched and service time equaling one year and 42 days. The rookie tag is his to wear, though, since it came to be known that those totals are inaccurate.
Blackley really entered the season with only 42 days of service time, as his one year on the disabled list in 2006 was erroneously factored into the equation. So now the A's, who already celebrated rookie hazing day last week, are considering doing it again just for Blackley, a rookie at 29 years old.
"I said I'd do it," Blackley said smiling, "but I really think we have much more important things to worry about right now."
Blackley already participated in the always amusing dress-up day for rookies, going as a Hooters waitress in 2004 while with the Mariners. Now, he's simply concerned with his role as a starter in a rotation that, with his addition, boasts five rookies.
His newly deemed status as a rookie makes for a handful of impressive stats:
The A's have used 19 rookies overall, which is second most in Oakland history. They utilized 21 in 2008.
Of the 19 rookies, 12 are pitchers, which ties the Oakland record set in 2009.
Rookie pitchers have combined to set Oakland records for wins (48), appearances (294), innings pitched (795) and strikeouts (636).
Entering Wednesday, A's rookies have combined for 93 starts, which is tied with the 1983 club for second most in Oakland history. The record is 116, set in 2009.