Oakland Athletics: 5 Things Learned About the A's in the First Week of Baseball
As to be expected, the Oakland Athletics are dead last in the AL West—but fans still learned quite a bit about the A's this week, specifically about new face Yoenis Cespedes.
Oakland entered the season with a ton of question marks.
In just a short span, they seem to have answered a few of them already.
Here are five things we've learned so far about the Oakland A's.
Yoenis Cespedes Is the Real Deal
There was concern over newly-acquired outfielder Yoenis Cespedes' abilities at the big league level.
He has since silenced those in doubt.
Cespedes has successfully reached base safely in every game he's played this season.
In those seven games, he's hit .273 with two doubles and three monster home runs for an impressive 1.201 OPS.
His seven RBI and six runs scored only add to his 2012 resume.
The First Base Logjam Is Clear
With just days left before Major League Baseball opened its regular season, the Oakland Athletics were carrying four first basemen.
It took a week into the season to figure it out, but the problem has been provided a solution.
While Barton takes over the starting duties, Kila Ka'aihue will remain with the team as the backup.
Chris Carter was sent down to begin the season.
Seth Smith Was a Great Pick Up
Seth Smith—traded for in the offseason to play left field—has been an effective designated hitter for the Oakland Athletics.
After signing Yoenis Cespedes and bumping Coco Crisp to left, Smith became the odd man out.
Luckily for the A's, he's flourished at the DH spot so far.
In six games, Smith is hitting .364 with three runs scored, two RBI and two walks.
Kurt Suzuki Won't Last the Season in Oakland
There was speculation as late as March that catcher Kurt Suzuki would be dealt.
So far, he's still an Oakland Athletic. But for how much longer?
His backup—Anthony Recker—hasn't had the opportunity to shine just yet in the majors.
Josh Donaldson, the team's other catcher, currently plays third base.
But there's one more.
Sacramento River Cats catcher Derek Norris is crushing the ball with a .346 average and a 1.221 OPS.
His nine hits this season include four doubles, one triple and two home runs.
Suzuki's days look numbered.
He finished last year with a .237 average. So far he's hitting .200 this season.
The Gio Gonzalez Trade Was Worth It
During the offseason, the Oakland Athletics traded Gio Gonzalez to the Washington Nationals for a slew of prospects.
Many fans were devastated at the news of one of Oakland's fan-favorites leaving.
Gonzalez is but a distant memory now.
In his first game with the Nationals, he lasted 3.2 innings, earning a 9.82 ERA.
In return, the A's received Brad Peacock, Tom Milone, Derek Norris and A.J. Cole.
The slide prior pointed out Norris' Triple-A stats.
Peacock has pitched in one game for Sacramento, earning a win with a 3.00 ERA.
Milone has dazzled so far. Expected to compete for the fifth spot in the rotation, he easily won the third spot instead.
He's already pitched an eight inning gem in which he only allowed three hits and no runs.
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