Three story lines to watch during A's spring training 

click to enlarge Oakland tapped some overseas talent for the second year in a row, bringing on Hiroyuki Nakajima. - AP FILE PHOTO
  • AP file photo
  • Oakland tapped some overseas talent for the second year in a row, bringing on Hiroyuki Nakajima.

Overseas addition

The A’s dipped into the international market in signing Yoenis Cespedes last year and hit a home run. They are hoping they can do the same this year with Japanese shortstop Hiroyuki Nakajima, who will get first crack at the starting job this spring.

Outfield platoon

 

Between Yoenis Cespedes, Josh Reddick, Coco Crisp, Chris Young and Seth Smith, the A’s have more quality outfielders than they have room to play on a daily basis. A trade is always a possibility, but don’t be surprised if one is generally the DH and the other rotates in as manager Bob Melvin rides the hot hand.

Bullpen

 

Grant Balfour emerged at the end of 2012 as a lights-out closer the A’s desperately needed, but the Aussie will be sidelined with knee surgery for four to six weeks. Setup men Ryan Cook and Sean Doolittle could see some extra work in camp, shutting the door while Balfour is rehabbing.


A's spring training schedule


February
23     at Brewers    12:05 p.m.
24     at Angels    12:05 p.m.
25     vs. Indians    12:05 p.m.
26     at Diamondbacks    12:05 p.m.
27     vs. Padres    12:05 p.m.
28     at Cubs    12:05 p.m.
March
1     vs. Giants    12:05 p.m.
2     vs. Rockies    12:05 p.m.
3     at Rockies    12:05 p.m.
4     vs. Angels    12:05 p.m.
5     at Royals    12:05 p.m.
5     vs. Italy (WBC)    12:05 p.m.
6     No game
7     vs. Mariners    12:05 p.m.
8     at Mariners    12:05 p.m.
9     at Rangers    12:05 p.m.
10     vs. Diamondbacks    1:05 p.m.
11     at Padres    1:05 p.m.
12     vs. Royals    1:05 p.m.
13     No game
14     vs. Rangers    1:05 p.m.
15     at Diamondbacks    1:05 p.m.
16     vs. Angels    1:05 p.m.
16     at White Sox (ss)    1:05 p.m.
17     vs. Cubs    1:05 p.m.
18     vs. Mariners    1:05 p.m.
19     at Dodgers    1:05 p.m.
20     No game
21     at Reds    1:05 p.m.
22     vs. White Sox    7:05 p.m.
23     at Giants    1:05 p.m.
24     vs. Dodgers    1:05 p.m.
25     vs. Brewers    1:05 p.m.
26     at Indians    1:05 p.m.
27     vs. Rockies    1:05 p.m.
28     at Giants*    7:15 p.m.
29     at Giants*    7:15 p.m.
30     vs. Giants**    1:05 p.m.

All home games at Phoenix Municipal Stadium except where indicated
* at AT&T Park ** at Oakland Coliseum

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