Brandon McCarthy throws first bullpen session; rotation candidate Tom Milone impresses

Likely opening day starter Brandon McCarthy was among the A’s pitchers throwing bullpen sessions Sunday during the team’s first workout of the season. McCarthy said he felt good — nothing extraordinary in his mind — and added that he should be ready in plenty of time should he get the call for the opening day start March 28 against the Mariners in Tokyo. A’s manager Bob Melvin has hinted strongly that McCarthy will pitch that game.

Newcomers Tom Milone, Brad Peacock and Ryan Cook also threw from the mound, as did 2011 first-round pick Sonny Gray. Catcher Kurt Suzuki was particularly impressed with Milone, who along with Peacock is competing for a rotation spot. “For the first day of camp, to start spotting up like he was today is pretty impressive,” Suzuki said.

The left-handed Milone is no flame thrower — his strength is his ability to locate his fastball, cutter, curve and changeup. Suzuki said Milone has a terrific changeup, describing it as “Dallas-like,” in reference to fellow A’s lefty Dallas Braden.

Melvin, who took over the club from Bob Geren last June, is in his first spring with the A’s. Early impression: The man is everywhere. Melvin shifted all around the six pitching mounds at the team’s practice facility, getting a look at as many pitchers as he could. A short time later, he was back at Phoenix Municipal Stadium, wandering the infield as position players took batting practice. The A’s have a condensed spring to prepare for their early season opener, and Oakland has more new faces than usual after making several offseason trades. Melvin is trying to familiarize himself with the entire roster. “I’ll look up some bio stuff (on different players) and try to have a conversation on a personal level, and I think that makes them more comfortable,” he said.

There were overcast skies in the morning, but that cleared up and the A’s first workout took place on a sunny afternoon fit for a postcard.

Joe Stiglich

  • Stan

    Slick was on the morning show. Wow-do reporters lay down towels to knee upon at his presence? The amount of brown nosing by that show was in tonnage. And Beane tossed out every cliche he’s built “Build for the future”.and never was it pointed out Beane man said that in 2006,2007,etc,etc. “We HAD to trade”…fill in the all star. No pointed questions of, if Beane felt they were such a burden,why not trade last season when he could have gotten top of the line in return?
    Then the bizarre,Beane couldnt pronounce the name-and never did- of the player he gave 36 million that hasnt swung at a single MLB pitch. Wow,how can that be?
    It shows you Beane has other prioritys besides ruining the A’s..like his bank account,going to the Oscars. And the local media makes it easy on the sheister to keep his world intact.
    Man,that Dan Dibley can laugh like clockwork at every Beane musing.Pitiful.

  • Stan

    whoo-hoo. We signed Manny. Thats Slick’s genius at work again. Who needs a young Geo or Cahill when you can sign Manny? Eithier,Gonzoles,Street..why would the A’s want young talented all stars when we can sign 40 year olds on female hormones and a guy who has never faced a single MLB pitcher? He’s a genius. Or he’s something..

  • Stan

    LOL! 95.7 is wondering if the Manny signing is a novelty or as they say “A bearded lady”..! Well,Manny is on female hormones..right?