Putting the Hanley Ramirez incident to rest

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ramirez-hanley-100519.jpgWe’ve certainly managed to squeeze a lot of mileage out of the Hanley Ramirez incident over the last couple of days.

Yes, he loafed. Yes, it was a bad thing. But now, after his apology to his team – and, even better, a three-hit game in a victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday – we can all move on. (By the way, did you notice the Marlins are three games behind the Phillies?)

But before we do that, let’s take one last quick run around the Internet to see what they’re saying about the Florida Marlins’ best player.

First of all, in case you missed it, take a look at the big play in question.

  • Our own Bert Blyleven isn’t worried about Ramirez dogging it so much as he hates how the Marlin handled the aftermath.
  • Orlando Magic coach Stan Van Gundy can’t understand why a baseball player can’t hustle when he’s only asked to do so every so often.

“Baseball demands maybe 7, 8, 9 times a game you gotta really bust your ass and make a play. You can’t do that?”

Um, Stan, you might want to talk to your team, which is getting kicked into left field by the Celtics.

  • Joe Posnanski asks his readers to answer the question “What if it had been Jeter?”

My personal favorite: Jeter would’ve caught the ball on one bounce, froze the runners with a look, started a triple play and helped an old lady across Dallas Braden’s mound.

  • Will Leitch (and Joe Sheehan) writes that talent should outweigh effort every time, but still wants Ramirez to “run, you idiot!”
  • And last but not least, Joe Riggins has a name for Ramirez: Lollygagger!

Are you on Twitter? You can follow Bob here, and get all your HBT updates here.

Three A’s rookies hit their first big league home runs on Saturday

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The Athletics followed Friday’s 3-0 shutout with a rookie-led home run derby on Saturday afternoon, watching not one, not two, but three rookies belt their first major league home runs off of the White Sox’ James Shields.

Right fielder Matt Olson was the first to strike, taking Shields deep on a first-pitch, two-run blast in the first inning for his first home run in 49 major league plate appearances:

Fellow outfielder Jaycob Brugman duplicated his teammate’s results in the second inning with a solo home run, his first extra-base hit of any kind since he made his debut on June 9:

In the third, with a comfortable 4-0 lead backing two scoreless frames from Oakland right-hander Daniel Gossett, Franklin Barreto took his shot at Shields. After getting the call several hours prior to Saturday’s game, he became the fastest of the three rookies to record his first big league homer, going yard on a 2-2 changeup and driving in Bruce Maxwell to give the A’s a six-run advantage.

The Athletics currently lead the White Sox 8-2 in the top of the sixth inning.

Athletics call up top prospect Franklin Barreto

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The Athletics called up their top prospect on Saturday, inserting shortstop Franklin Barreto into the lineup for their second game against the White Sox. Barreto was originally scheduled to make his major league debut on Sunday, but got a head start after Jed Lowrie sustained a minor knee sprain in Friday’s 3-0 win and was scratched from Saturday’s lineup.

Barreto, 21, has been rapidly climbing the rungs of the A’s minor league system after getting dealt by the Blue Jays in 2014. He got his first taste of Triple-A action late last year, going 6-for-17 with three RBI and getting caught stealing in two attempts. He fared little better this spring, slashing .281/.326/.428 with eight home runs and a .754 OPS through his first 309 PA in Nashville.

While his minor league production has been solid, if underwhelming for a prospect of his caliber, the A’s are expected to give the rookie infielder a long leash with both Marcus Semien and Chad Pinder sitting on the disabled list. Pinder landed on the 10-day DL after suffering a left hamstring strain on Friday. Semien, meanwhile, is still working his way back from the 60-day DL with a right wrist fracture and likely won’t rejoin the team until he completes a rehab assignment with High-A Stockton.