Today would accept been the Athletics’ home opener adjoin the Twins, and Bob Melvin would acceptable accept been at his board at 6:30 a.m. Instead, he’s like everybody else, self-isolating, watching and waiting. He’s not cogent his players to do annihilation above actuality safe and healthy.
It’s March 26. It’s Aperture Day. It’s Communicable Central. It’s a Weird Time.
In a accustomed age, the Oakland Coliseum would accept been arranged today. There would accept been pregame introductions of both teams forth the abhorrent lines. There would accept been bands. Maybe there would accept been a flyover afore the aboriginal angle afore the Oakland A’s hosted the Minnesota Twins.
Before all of that, however, Bob Melvin would accept been at the Coliseum by about 6:30 a.m. or so.
“I don’t like to be rushed,” the Oakland A’s administrator said Thursday from his home in Scottsdale, Ariz., aloof bottomward the alley from the A’s Mesa bounce training complex. “There’s consistently preparation. It’s a new team, it’s the aboriginal time, you appetite to try to get all your advice together. I try to do assignment on my (lineup) card, which is affectionate of a arrangement for the game.
“There are a lot of distractions during aperture day, and I aloof don’t appetite to be rushed in accepting my alertness done.”
There would accept been one or maybe two adamantine calls for autograph out that aboriginal calendar card, decidedly at additional base, area the antagonism during bounce training had not narrowed the acreage bottomward much. Tony Kemp, Vimael Machin, Franklin Barreto and Jorge Mateo were still in the running.
And appropriate acreage would accept been an affair with Stephen Piscotty still convalescent from an angled injury. Perhaps Mark Canha would accept been asked to move from larboard to right, aperture a alpha for either Robbie Grossman or Chad Pinder in left.
But now those are questions for addition day.
Melvin has no botheration that the civic acknowledgment to the communicable dwarfs the accent of baseball, so abundant so that he’s afflictive with alike the advancement that he or the A’s account out planned workouts for his troops while they crouch down.
There’s not a accomplished lot he can do.
“Nor should we, really,” Melvin said. “Who are we to acquaint addition to go out and comedy bolt with somebody abroad who could be infected? It’s bigger than that appropriate now. I anticipate that guys are demography it on their own to assignment out. And they should accomplish those decisions for themselves added than we should.
“And hopefully at some point in time, we’ll be authoritative the decisions again.”
Melvin is awful optimistic that baseball will get going, alike as he’s accommodating to delay for the appropriate time for things to aces up again. His aggregation abstracts to be one of baseball’s best in 2020.
“We feel like we’ve got a acceptable team. I mean, we won 97 amateur both of the aftermost two years,” Melvin said. “And basically, everybody’s back, to an extent. So, we should anticipate that we accept a actual acceptable club.
“We’re not absolutely cerebration about it that abundant today. But we were absolutely aflame about the division aback bounce training ended. And aback bounce training started. And whenever it picks up again, I don’t anticipate our mindset will change.”
Melvin and his wife, Kelley, accept their dogs around, as always, and their daughter, Alexi, can assignment remotely, so she and her bodies accept fabricated the move to Scottsdale from the Bay Area for the moment.
“We can get out a little bit actuality area we are,” Melvin said. “We don’t do it en masse or actuality about added people. We can absorb time in the aback backyard or go for a airing with the dogs, we get out a little.”
And delay for baseball’s return.
“At some point in time, we’ll be arena baseball again,” Melvin said, “which is article everybody wants to do.”
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