Wednesday, January 28, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

A’s, Giants give Bay Area high hopes for playoffs

Bob Melvin, Yoenis Cespedes, Craig Gentry

Oakland Athletics' Yoenis Cespedes (52) is congratulated by manager Bob Melvin, left, and Craig Gentry, right, after Cespedes scored against the San Francisco Giants in the third inning of a baseball game against the San Francisco Giants Tuesday, July 8, 2014, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

By
From page B1 | July 17, 2014 |

OAKLAND — The small-budget Oakland Athletics are baseball’s best team at the break in a division featuring some of the sport’s highest-paid stars. The San Francisco Giants are right in the chase for the NL West title despite recent stumbles.

Bay Area baseball has delivered a stellar first half. It’s only mid-July and there is already talk of a special October and, perhaps, the first Bay Bridge Series since 1989.

California could have four teams still playing into October. The two organizations in Northern California have set the tone.

“It’d be hard to find two teams in the same city doing as well as we are,” said Giants right-hander Tim Hudson, who began his career with the A’s. “It’s really exciting for all of the fans from both sides of the bay. They’ve had the opportunity over the years to have some really fun teams to watch, World Series-caliber teams every year. New York can’t say that, L.A. can’t really say that. It’s been fun.”

Oakland, a major league-best 59-36 and the two-time defending AL West champion, produced a pair of six-game winning streaks behind its reliable starting pitching. And general manager Billy Beane pulled off a July 4 trade with the Cubs that brought Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel to a deep rotation that lost Jarrod Parker and A.J. Griffin to season-ending elbow injuries that required surgery.

“We could probably go seven deep,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said. “Tommy Milone’s in Triple-A right now and with the numbers he’s put up, it means we’re creating a lot of depth to withstand whatever could potentially happen coming up in the second half.”

Several offseasons ago, Beane committed to building from the bottom of the minor league system on up to make sure his club had the depth to withstand injuries, and that philosophy is working — even in a talented division that includes Robinson Cano in Seattle and power hitters Josh Hamilton and Albert Pujols of the Angels.

Oakland had its most wins ever before the All-Star break, and its six All-Stars were most for the A’s since 1975.

“They’ve done a great job of stacking this team and this organization with guys who can get the job done at this level,” Oakland right fielder Josh Reddick said. “With the last two and now a third year, we’re proving that we’re here to be a true competitor and we’re showing that with the best record in baseball right now. It gives us confidence to know that he (Beane) is wanting to go for the whole thing just as much as we are.”

In each of the past two Octobers, the Tigers have eliminated Oakland in division series that went the five-game maximum.

The Giants, winners of the 2010 and ’12 World Series, missed the playoffs last year and hope they can get back on a roll like the team across the bay. At 52-43, they are one game behind the NL West-leading Los Angeles Dodgers, and Tim Lincecum has won four straight starts for the first time since April 2010.

“No question, the Giants have really established something here for a long period of time,” Melvin said. “It’s difficult to not only win a World Series, win two out of four, and be in the position they’re in right now. It could be really exciting for the Bay Area.”

The Giants are counting on some reinforcements in the second half. Center fielder Angel Pagan and second baseman Marco Scutaro come back from injuries to give San Francisco the roster it envisioned.

It led the NL West by 9 1/2 games when it was 42-21 on June 8, but has struggled since then. The Giants were outscored 19-7 in losing three out of four in their recent interleague series with the A’s.

“Their boat’s just kind of been going in a steady direction and we’re just trying to get ours on that path as well,” said Lincecum, who pitched his second no-hitter in 11 months against San Diego on June 25. “You get into those ruts and you try to look for how to get out of them and I think it’s just doing what you did beforehand, not necessarily putting so much emphasis on getting out of it.”

Despite injuries, small crowds and even sewage problems in their home stadium, the A’s have found a way to win.

“We’ve had contributions everywhere,” assistant general manager David Forst said. “It’s certainly been not unlike any other year where we’ve had to tinker and turn over the roster as we go. … The players are unfazed by any changes we make. They just go out and play for three hours a day, and they’ve played great.”

 

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Recent Articles

  • Enter your email address to subscribe and receive notifications of new posts by email.

  • .

    Solano News

     
    Youngster battles brain cancer a 2nd time

    By Susan Winlow | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    2 Solano road projects get green light

    By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A1

     
     
    Rush Ranch seeks docents

    By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A2

    Health officials report 1st Solano flu death

    By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3, 5 Comments | Gallery

     
    Kroc Health Fair offers free screenings

    By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

     
    Vanden to host science fair

    By Bill Hicks | From Page: A4

    Woman with Solano ties caught up in tax fraud case

    By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A4

     
    Fairfield police to offer parenting class

    By Ian Thompson | From Page: A4

    Frazier schedules coffee in Suisun City

    By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A4

     
    Vacaville police to offer law enforcement academy

    By Ian Thompson | From Page: A4

     
    Motorcyclist leads CHP on afternoon chase

    By Ian Thompson | From Page: A5

     
    Coalition members review tobacco control report card

    By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A5

     
     
    American Legion Post schedules head-shaving fundraiser

    By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A6

    Vacaville Toastmasters welcome guests

    By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A6

     
    Chipotle fundraiser to benefit Armijo newspaper

    By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A6, 2 Comments

     
    Dramas, thrillers lead week’s box office openings

    By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B8

     
    Suisun City police log: Jan. 24, 2015

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

    Fairfield police log: Jan. 26, 2015

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

     
    Fairfield police log: Jan. 25, 2015

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

    Fairfield police log: Jan. 24, 2015

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

     
    Suisun City police log: Jan. 26, 2015

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

    Suisun City police log: Jan. 25, 2015

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

     
    .

    US / World

    Gold nuggets stolen in smash and grab

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

     
    Officials lose track of billions in funding

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

    Bill would treat e-cigs the same as regular cigarettes

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

     
    CSU chancellor looks to increase graduation rates

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

    Police: Parents who killed selves, kids feared apocalypse

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A13

     
    NTSB: Systemic flaws in safety oversight of gas pipelines

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

    Catholic church in San Francisco to phase out altar girls

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

     
    Military has wide discretion on Bergdahl charges

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

    Gunmen storm Libya hotel, killing American, 9 others

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

     
    Famed civil rights protesters to have arrest records erased

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

    Secret talks in Jordan try to win release of hostages

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

     
    ‘Wicked storm': Blizzard drops 2 feet of snow on New England

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

    On Auschwitz anniversary, leader warns Jews again targets

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

     
    .

    Opinion

     
    Economic recovery, brought to you by technocrats

    By Jared Bernstein | From Page: A11

     
    .

    Living

    Community Calendar: Jan. 28, 2015

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

     
    Today in History: Jan. 28, 2015

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Horoscope Jan. 28, 2015

    By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B6

     
    We live close to my nephew but he chooses to remain distant

    By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: B6

     
    10 Things: 10 fresh takes on Super Bowl guacamole

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

     
    .

    Entertainment

    Christina Aguilera to perform ahead of NBA All-Star Game

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

     
    Common, John Legend to perform ‘Glory’ at Academy Awards

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

    Katie Holmes to guest on ‘Ray Donovan’

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

     
    .

    Sports

    Falcon boys drop 69-61 SCAC loss to Bethel

    By Marcus Lomtong | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Local Report: Armijo boys roll past Napa 69-41

    By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B1

    Nadal loses; Sharapova to play all-Russian semi in Australia

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

     
    Belichick and The Beast talk but don’t say much at Media Day

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

    Deflated topic: air pressure in footballs

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1, 1 Comment

     
    Rose’s shot lifts Bulls over Warriors 113-111 in overtime

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Lynch at Media Day: ‘I’m here so I don’t get fined’

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

     
    Christina Aguilera to perform ahead of NBA All-Star Game

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Super Bowl, Tiger make Phoenix center of sports universe

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Long after Twitter feud, Revis, Sherman pledge respect

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    The distinctive international flavor of Super Bowl Media Day

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Serena Williams advances, Venus out of Australian Open

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Getting fired from New England led to Carroll’s reinvention

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Sharks in ‘dogfight’ to secure playoff berth

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Jury convicts 2 ex-Vanderbilt players of raping woman

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Rio official says there’s ‘no plan B’ for Olympic sailing

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Golfer Allenby stands by story, says truth will come out

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Tony Stewart returns with a swagger not seen in 2 years

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Shooters find not every basketball is same in college game

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Patrick heads into 2015 in final season with team, sponsor

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Manfred hopeful of A’s getting new ballpark in Oakland

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    This date in sports history for Jan. 28, 2015

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

     
    .

    Business

    US home price gains slow in November on weaker sales

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

     
    FTC clears Albertsons’ purchase of Safeway

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

    .

    Obituaries

    Clarence E. Morgan

    By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

     
    Don Johnson

    By Nancy Green | From Page: A4, 9 Comments

    Dzhon Athanc

    By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

     
    Julia P. Tan

    By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

    Woodrow Allen Oakley

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

     
    Donald Wesley Johnson

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

    Joseph Phillip Raiff

    By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

     
    .

    Comics

    Blondie

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    Dilbert

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    Rose is Rose

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    Get Fuzzy

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    Wizard of Id

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    Peanuts

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    Zits

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    Garfield

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    Sally Forth

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    For Better or Worse

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    Pickles

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    Beetle Bailey

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    Baby Blues

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    Frank and Ernest

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    B.C.

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    Baldo

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    Sudoku

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    Cryptoquote

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

    Bridge

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    Word Sleuth

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6