Athletics notes: McPherson, Beane, Desme

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athleticslogo.jpgAccording to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com, the Athletics have signed former top prospect Dallas McPherson to a minor league contract with an invite to spring training.



McPherson, 29, failed to make the
Marlins out of spring training last season, then underwent back surgery
in July after signing a minor league contract with the Giants.
McPherson was once a highly-touted prospect in the Angels’
organization, but he hasn’t done much on the major league level,
batting just .245/.298/.458 with 18 home runs and 45 RBI in parts of
four seasons while striking out 34 percent of the time.




Regardless, McPherson has walked
into a pretty good situation in Oakland. He is expected to compete for
a starting job in 2010, as Adam Kennedy and Bobby Crosby are free
agents and prospect Brett Wallace, who was acquired from St. Louis in the Matt Holliday trade, might not be ready for the jump to
the majors.




In other Athletics’ news, general manager Billy Beane was recently interviewed by John Sickels of Minor League Ball.
Beane would like top prospect Chris Carter to find a fit in the
outfield while he hopes Wallace can improve his defense at third base
in anticipation of a promotion to the major leagues. Finally, Beane has
some high praise for Grant Desme, who won the MVP of the Arizona Fall
League
, batting .315/.413/.667 with 11 home runs, 27 RBI and 30 runs
scored in 27 games. Though his strikeout rate is a concern, Beane
likens him to Jayson Werth of the Phillies.

MLBPA agrees to extend deadline for new posting agreement between MLB, NPB

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Update (7:00 PM ET): The MLBPA announces that the deadline has been extended 24 hours while MLB and NPB continue to negotiate a new agreement for the posting system. The new deadline is 8 PM ET on Tuesday.

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Last Thursday, we learned that the MLBPA was challenging the Nippon Professional Baseball posting system, delaying Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani’s move to Major League Baseball. The latest collective bargaining agreement removed a lot of the incentive for players to come to the U.S. by capping pay. Ohtani, for example, can only receive a signing bonus between $300,000 and $3.53 million while his team — the Nippon Ham Fighters — would receive $20 million for posting him.

Jon Morosi reports that the deadline for this issue to be resolved is 8 PM ET on Monday evening. He notes that key NPB officials have worked through the night in Japan to try to reach a resolution. It is possible that even if no agreement is reached, the deadline could be pushed further back.

Ohtani, 23, has become a heralded hitter and pitcher in Japan. At the plate over his five-year career, he has compiled a .286/.358/.500 triple-slash line with 48 home runs and 166 RBI in 1,170 plate appearances. On the mound, he has a 2.52 ERA with a 624/200 K/BB ratio across 543 innings.