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95.7 The Game>Audio & Video on Demand>>Bob Melvin says it's all about our expectations

Bob Melvin says it's all about our expectations

Feb 19, 2014|

Bob Melvin, Oakland A's manager, joins Haberman and Middlekauff live from Spring Training.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

In surveys excited about getting here in the lead up is going to position players get here and in the pitchers. You know start throwing to the position players -- it's -- batting practice or more going on. You know the reason the pitchers and catchers are here early so the the pitchers can develop their arms and you know already whenever but when it once games start so it's it's all bit of a process but. It seems to be a little more excitement as the -- stick on. You guys have won as many games in the last couple years are you able to reflect on that at all in the offseason has kind of takes that back. Yeah I think you know each and every year you wanna bring the successes that you've had from the season before confidence wise yet know that it's a new season to start over the accountability and and the focus needs to be every bit as good if not you know try to be better with -- so. You know just just just part of the process right here in and when you win the west two consecutive years you should bring some companies along with him the next year. You handle with the position players reporting the first few days with everybody else do you take. A minute or are few minutes to address the team and and and deliver particular messages so that message -- yeah I do then and tomorrow's that day that's when everybody's here you know even -- wolf will be here tomorrow and so if there's ever stated the union for the manager it's it's the first data position players here and everybody gets together and that's when I do I give a message. What I think our focus needs to be what we've accomplished what we need to accomplish going forward what our goals will be. So solve that kids put in perspective tomorrow -- relaxed your coming in at this time one of the messages that. It seemed like you were sending was last year's team was last year's team this is a different team out of matches that part of this year's matches messages -- yeah absolutely but you know we did at the right way last year that second year especially for young group can be a difficult year. And we really did look at it is it is. Last year is last year. This year is in new year and our focus and our commitment needs to be every bit as good if not better so. You you keep trying to build on that but I was proud of the fact that what usually is a typical year for younger group after some success was another successful year. Seems like you guys are kind of -- burst of hunger and you've talked earlier this week how do you keep that single minded focus to your team. Well it's just about our expectations of ourselves and that's really all that matters so. You know if you're reading a lot of the forecast in the predictions that's fine you know a lot of those are going to be different there's. Always have a little bit and on underdog tag bit. It really doesn't matter as long as our expectations. Of ourselves. You know year. Amongst the group is the same. Talk to Jim Johnson fan fest and he said he judges managers two ways how day. Put their players in position -- manageable and you talked about the influence that Buck Showalter had on you. The Yankees obviously -- With his manager and in in Baltimore so we look at this apple pan. I know it it's can provide many options for you but do you approach it with a particular plan on how you want it. Used those guys -- that still to be determined. Two to an extent to be determined when you're going to disease you what you want define roles some days with the depth that we have back and change from day today. You look at the workload -- some of these guys over the last couple years where there's great speakers and whether it's Johnson whether it's cook and do little. -- here which is credited for us last year too so it gives us the ability -- certainly earlier in the season not over capture bullpen. Even when your games when your head so. It's quality depth then and there could be some mix and match a particular day depending on how maybe the last -- last three days. With Jim Johnson cynically led the American League last year's series is there what are you seen him specifically -- -- Well. Ease -- -- little different as far as how closers go closing easily of one dominate it's usually a swing and miss pitch and there's some strikeouts involved. His best -- sinker. And when you're using guys via a guy like as often as he likes to be used you gotta be economical with your pitches and and he is mean he'd rather go out there and sorority hater and pitch inning. As oppose a strike at a few guys and their -- fifteen or twenty pitching so. You know he's a little longer in his career reasons greater understanding. What he needs to do to prepare in and what you need to -- when he goes out on the mound and in you know little against the grain for most. Closers he is a ground ball guy guys it usually does to me it is. You made the point. With the stars of making sure that it's clear that Tommy Malone -- of that conversation. As as a six guys competing for those five spots we talked about. Useful depth in the bullpen in and being able to maybe. You some have some economy with the way you you work with that -- will the same apply you think to the starting pitching that she could being. Yeah I mean -- you never know he may go through a series were. You know here's your starters take a little bit off the bullpen and then another series were the bullpen takes all of the onus off the starters depending on who's available and and you know who's pitched how many days in a row but we have the ability to do both. I do want the starters with the mindset that might take the ball I wanna go out there and I want to be the last guy out there it doesn't happen very often but I want that. To be their mindset so. You know we have some depth in the rotation as well on in for me there's no way that Tommy Malone shouldn't be considered part of this equation. You still want guys competing for jobs you don't -- going to spring training and CDs are five guys especially some younger guys so. You wants an intensity union wants competition. We assess goodness he's RC keep peace in middle lineup is -- anything specifically guys working on the next six weeks to get him ready for the season while I think everybody. Takes a look at what happens season before and how you can get better and that certainly the case with him. You know he did have some wrist injuries last year which affected him he did have some time on the DL and there were some games you probably one out there where it was -- percent so health. Obviously is going to be key for him. But you know I have heard a little bit about shortening the stroke up which he's been able to do -- times using the whole field which he needs to do because he does have power all fields. And allows intractable bit longer. Is that something you have to work on -- -- launching in the heat of the seasons and our work on the little things where you know you set your your work ethic in your routine -- in spring training and then. You know the accountability of haven't fallen through during the season's awfully important -- it all gets started right here right now. Where you tweak your teen whatever it is it did you insulated. As far as each routine can be a little bit different but it. This is -- it starts. We -- looking for from -- -- has obviously we've talked about him before and and you get to see him. Up close last -- liked -- one in particular you watching for from him this. Well you know -- it is. Kind of go in the fashion that he did in the second half the last last year really the whole season but the second half hews pretty dominant so. It's usually or around where you ran out of castle bit the second half it seemed like he you know he just kept getting better and better so. You know when you go to a new team you're trying to impress his bullpen have been very impressive as -- -- Kerry to his fastball one of those guys or. You look partners in 9293 it feels to the hitter like 9495. Hides the ball pretty well. And so he's been impressive to this point but we're just looking to get him healthy through a full season carry on from what he accomplished last year. Craig Gentry is obviously very versatile player as a manager how do you make sure you meant to maximize that versatility. Well and spring it's easy because there is gonna get -- that -- you know -- were gonna have a plan going into the season and you know a lot of his start to probably be against left handed pitching. You know on on those days potentially Coco can DH Redick may get a day obsessed that this could get a DH day so he's can be used a lot. And I think just as much the end game stuff with him because he's earlier and in him impact falling game player whether it's defense whether its base running or whether it's pinch hitting. Above all the our guest I know I just outside -- finished fourth in the MVP voting and he was a guy that after the break had a little political all of them and then picked back up. -- had a great year what's it like to manage Josh Donaldson. Arm he -- very intense player he's passionate about what he says. Guy you need to stay on top of -- times because he tries to do too much and I think during that period. One in everybody's gonna go through some rough periods but I think during that period he was probably going to be too much. You know when the team's not scoring runs through these type things that certain guys will try to. You know carried too much a load that was probably a case of him with him for a little bit of time that. Was awfully consistent last year on both ends of the ball and deservedly was in the MVP talk like he was. Bob appreciate the time and capture -- talk a lot -- great here aren't they cute.

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