Oakland’s Triple-A affiliate in Sacramento was knocked out of the Pacific Coast League playoffs yesterday, so the A’s have recalled Jemile Weeks and Daric Barton as part of September roster expansion.
Weeks was demoted to Triple-A in mid-August after hitting just .220 in 113 games as the A’s starting second baseman. He batted .322 with an .834 OPS in 10 regular season games for Sacramento, but it’s unclear how much playing time he’ll get down the stretch with Cliff Pennington and Stephen Drew now serving as Oakland’s double-play duo.
Barton hit just .198 in 37 games for the A’s and has spent most of the season at Triple-A hitting .255 with a modest .425 slugging percentage in 74 games. He still has great on-base skills, with more walks (66) than strikeouts (53) and a .411 OBP, but Barton’s stock has plummeted in recent years and Chris Carter is now the A’s starting first baseman.
Major League Baseball has announced the umpiring crew for the World Series. John Hirschbeck is the crew chief. It’s his fifth World Series assignment, third as a crew chief.
A surprising name on the crew is Joe West. It’ll be his sixth World Series overall, but first since 2012. There had been chatter for several years that Major League Baseball was making a more concerted effort to get its best umpires into the World Series more often while minimizing the appearances of its weakest umpires. Most assumed West’s absence from the Fall Classic in recent years, despite his seniority, was a function of that. Maybe they’re still making merit a priority and maybe West has just improved? I’ll leave that for you to judge.
Anyway, here is the lineup of umps for Game 1. They will rotate after that, of course. If the series goes six games, Cowboy Joe will be calling the balls and strikes:
Home plate: Larry Vanover
1B: Chris Guccione
2B: John Hirschbeck
3B: Marvin Hudson
LF: Tony Randazzo
RF: Joe West
Replay Official for Games 1-2: Sam Holbrook (with assistance from Todd Tichenor)
Replay Official for Games 3-7: Larry Vanover (with assistance from Todd Tichenor)