MESA, Ariz. — The battle for the final three spots in the A’s starting rotation got underway in the team’s first official workout of spring training.

Kendall Graveman, Chris Bassitt, Andrew Triggs, Jharel Cotton, and Daniel Gossett were among the 15 pitchers who threw a bullpen session on Wednesday. Of those five pitchers mentioned, Graveman is the only one who is a lock to begin the season in the rotation.

Nobody is going to win a spot after a simple bullpen session. The first workout is mostly a chance to get a close look at younger pitchers, non-roster invitees, and guys returning from injury.

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Triggs and Bassitt, two pitchers returning from injury, were a couple that really stood out to A’s manager Bob Melvin. Triggs’ movement was particularly eye-catching for Melvin.

“He threw good pitches. Looked like he had good command,” Melvin said. “He’s had a long way to go since the injury he had last year and it looks like he’s rehabbed hard. The ball’s got some life to it.”

Triggs is fighting to recapture the starting role he lost last June, when a torn labrum in his left hip required season-ending surgery. He went 5-6 with a 4.27 ERA in 12 starts before the injury.

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Nolan Blackwood also threw a bullpen. A non-roster invitee, Blackwood, 23, is a pitcher who has the support of many in the organization. After getting a first-hand look at his funky sidearm delivery, Melvin came away impressed with what he saw.

“There are a lot of people in his corner in this camp,” Melvin said. “I know that I wouldn’t mind being pinch-hit for being in that on-deck circle if I had to face him.”

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Source:: East Bay – Sports


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A’s get first look at starting rotation competitors

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