Saturday, December 27, 2014
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

.

Solano News

Suisun Valley celebrates appellation’s anniversary

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Suisun museum adds Japanese-American internment exhibit

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

Girl’s selfless act boosts Suisun Wildlife Center

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Beer for 1st butterfly of year challenge returns

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Fairfield firefighters save Christmas for family

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

SF Giants championship trophy coming to Vacaville

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

 
Fire damages Fairfield home

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

Car rolls over on Highway 113

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

 
Fairfield man killed after family gathering in Napa

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: A4, 3 Comments

USA Weekend magazine ceases publication

By Glen Faison | From Page: B6

 
Suisun City police log: Dec. 25, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

Fairfield police log: Dec. 25, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

 
 
.

US / World

California braces for first widespread frost

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
California gears up for migrant driver’s licenses

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 2 Comments

People slide down bedsheets to escape motel fire

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Court: LA Police Department policy for impounding cars is OK

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Man shot to death in struggle over officer’s baton

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

 
4 dead in fiery Northern California car crash

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Police officer shoots woman in leg in Hollywood

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 2 Comments

 
Inmate breaks out of jail through ventilation duct

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

Bodies of woman, 3 grandsons found in burned home

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Truck crashes into home; 93-year-old resident dies

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Scientists target mess from Christmas tree needles

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Baby ostracized by other gorillas will switch zoos

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Thousands attend 8-hour wake for slain NYC officer

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
Study: Marijuana use has increased in Colorado

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 2 Comments

Dog not gone: Rescue in the Columbia Gorge

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Feline fame in cyberspace gives species a boost

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Lawmakers promise to help strapped oil-patch towns

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
At 101, dedicated union rep is calling it quits

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Can GOP shatter ‘Obama coalition’ in 2016?

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 2 Comments

 
GPS used to track some immigrants caught at border

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

10th anniversary of tsunami is marked with tears

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

 
.

Opinion

Sony hack is reminder of broader Sony dysfunction

By William Pesek | From Page: A8

 
A proud man, a good honorable man

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 14 Comments

 
.

Living

Today in History: Dec. 27, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Dec. 27, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: Dec. 27, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B5

 
Remember, caregivers need some care attention, too

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: B5

Cow that fled slaughterhouse in 2006 has new home, again

By The Associated Press | From Page: B10

 
.

Entertainment

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Jazz great Buddy DeFranco dies at age 91

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
1990s TV star ‘Screech’ charged in bar stabbing

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7, 1 Comment

.

Sports

Games to Remember from 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Suns outlast Kings 115-106 for 5th straight win

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Anthony Davis, Roman meet over tweet

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Cleveland reaches 50 years of sports futility

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Prep JV boys basketball: Vanden gets win in Dixon tourney

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

Could Watt be 1st NFL MVP from defense since Taylor in 1986?

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Dan Uggla joins Nationals for minor league deal

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Georgia’s Richt: RB Todd Gurley heading to NFL

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Slumping New Jersey Devils fire coach Pete DeBoer

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

No. 1 Kentucky, No. 4 Louisville resume rivalry

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Raiders rookie CB makes most of opportunity

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

High-scoring offenses create longer college games

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Anderson: post-game petulance was out of character

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Chiefs QB Alex Smith out with lacerated spleen

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Globetrotters’ Robert ‘Showboat’ Hall dies

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

NC State wins Bitcoin Bowl to cap turnaround year

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Rutgers beats North Carolina in Quick Lane Bowl

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

La. Tech beats Illinois 35-18 in Heart of Dallas Bowl

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Arizona’s Lindley back at starter, Stanton has infection

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

This date in sports history for Saturday, Dec. 27, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Weather for Saturday, Dec. 27, 2014

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B11

 
.

Business

In 2014, US economy began shaky, finished strong

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Missouri 1st to see average gas price below $2

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6, 1 Comment

Holiday deliveries improve but hiccups continue

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
.

Obituaries

Frances Cruz Pangelinan

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
John Benjamin Calvin Adams

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
.

Home Seller 12/27/14

Real estate transactions for Dec. 27, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR2

Average US 30-year mortgage edges up slightly

By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR2