Oakland Athletics Roundup: Josh Phegley Limited In Intrasquad Game


Josh Phegley Limited In Intrasquad Game; Mark Canha Out With Back Stiffness
Oakland Athletics Roundup: Tuesday, March 1

The Oakland Athletics held an intrasquad game on Tuesday morning, as Chris Bassitt and Rich Hill faced off in what might just be the most meaningless game of Spring Training. The outcome wasn’t important, but the game did highlight just how fragile the A’s catching situation is.

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Stephen Vogt is still recovering from his elbow surgery, and although he’s on pace to rejoin the team during the second week of games, his absence still means the Athletics are missing their likely Opening Day catcher. Meanwhile, backup catcher Josh Phegley was limited with a combination of flu-like symptoms and shoulder soreness. Phegley did get to hit on Tuesday, but he was originally supposed to be “out of action”, according to the San Francisco Chronicle’s Susan Slusser. In the meantime, the A’s backstop duties have mostly fallen to the team’s non-roster invitees.

Carson Blair and Bruce Maxwell will both get a chance to win the favor of the A’s staff, and Bryan Anderson and utility man Matt McBride will also fill in as needed. In Tuesday’s intrasquad game, Anderson hit a home run – but without Vogt and with Phegley on limited duty, the A’s are severely hurting for depth.

There’s little the Athletics can do about it now, of course. All of the free agent catchers have been signed, and the only way to acquire more depth would be through a trade – something that would likely cost the A’s dearly, given that many teams are in similar situations. For now, the fans and the organization will both just have to hope that Vogt and Phegley return to regular action as quickly as possible.

One last note: there’s no reason to be seriously concerned about Phegley, or Mark Canha, who missed the game with back stiffness. Teams are not going to ask their players to push through injuries in Spring Training, even if it’s an issue that they might have played through in the regular season. It’s a long season, and there’s no reason for them to risk further injury, so it’s better to have them sit out or have limited playing time as a precaution.

In Case You Missed It:

The Curse of La Potencia – Rich Paloma takes a light-hearted look at why the Athletics need to start trading away their power-hitting outfielders. Yoenis Cespedes isn’t the only one who’s cursed the A’s from postseason success.

2016 Preview: Third Baseman Danny Valencia – Danny Valencia will be the everyday first baseman in 2016. Will he continue to success as a full-time player? Samantha Riley predicts what will happen this season.

Eric Surkamp to Start Cactus League Opener – The Athletics have announced their starters for the first three days of camp, beginning with lefty Eric Surkamp. Who is he, and who else will take the mound in this first week?


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