Melvin still hasn't decided on A's Opening Day starter

Melvin still hasn't decided on A's Opening Day starter

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The A's are nearly three weeks away from their Opening Day matchup against the Indians at the Coliseum, but there's still no word on whom they'll select to start that game.

No matter the decision, it will be the A's ninth consecutive different Opening Day starter, the longest such streak in the Majors. Right-hander Jarrod Parker appears to be on schedule for the March 31 start, and he also has the credentials that would warrant such an honor, having gone 25-16 with a 3.73 ERA in 61 starts for the A's the past two years.

But manager Bob Melvin maintains the organization is still deciding between three guys -- presumably Parker, Sonny Gray and Scott Kazmir.

"We're still not there yet," said Melvin. "We'll just see how guys are doing health-wise, amongst probably three guys."

Melvin said health will be the biggest factor when choosing, "and how guys are performing to an extent," he said.

"And, really, Spring Training performance isn't the biggest factor in the world, yet at certain times it's the only thing you have to go on," Melvin continued. "So for the guys that you know are making your team, you don't really look at Spring Training performance, yet when you have competition for spots or there's something that needs to play out, as far as how you set out your rotation, maybe that does factor. Then you also look at the competition, who you're facing, maybe some track records there.

"We'll get together as a staff and front office to figure it out, but we're not there yet."

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.