Great Moments in Smearing Ballplayers for Imagined PED Use

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You’ve seen those Answers.com listicles on your Facebook feed, I’m sure. They’re everywhere. And I’m not gonna hate on them too much because (a) everyone’s gotta eat, and it’s not like most of us are paying Facebook anything out of pocket; and (b) some of those lists can be guilty pleasures.

I mean, no, I don’t care about the Ten Things I Didn’t Know About “Forrest Gump,” but I was sort of intrigued by the list of Actors who Refuse to Work With Each Other. And like a lot of you, I’m a sucker for anything to do with Child Stars Gone Bad. Everyone likes to waste time and everyone’s mileage varies, so live and let live in the vast, ridiculous Internet Content Factories in which we all either toil, partake from time to time or [gasp] even sorta like.

Here’s one, however, that doesn’t exactly fit my tastes:

source:

While I’m certainly not above clickbait, I’m not giving those guys the satisfaction of your clicks given that they’re trafficking in libelesque nonsense. They’re probably legally safe — heck, Rick Reilly and a lot of others played in this sandbox for years and never got sued somehow — but it’s certainly low rent. Even for spammy clickbait.

(thanks to Dave Merrell for the heads up)

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.