Oakland Athletics pitcher Sean Doolittle works against the Seattle Mariners during the sixth inning of a baseball game Friday, Sept. 4, 2015, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
AP Photo/Ben Margot

Sean Doolittle is in The Best Shape of His Life

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Sometimes this stuff is just too easy. Still, we greatly appreciate Sean Doolittle cutting to the chase at Athletics’ camp in Mesa, Arizona. It’s a real help.

By the way, Doolittle also changed his Twitter name to “BestShapeOfMyLifeGuy,” so he’s living the gimmick these days.

Doolittle missed the start of last season due to a slight tear in his rotator cuff. The southpaw finally made his season debut in late May, but landed right back on the disabled list after just one appearance. After three months of rehab, Doolittle rejoined the Athletics in late August and posted a 4.26 ERA and 13/5 K/BB ratio over 12 2/3 innings. He looked much better after his first couple of appearances and his velocity wasn’t far off from where it has been in the past. The Athletics added Ryan Madson over the winter, but Doolittle should be the favorite for save chances this season if he’s healthy. And fortunately for the A’s, it sounds like he is.

Jonathan Lucroy is in The Best Shape of His Life

Jonathan Lucroy
Associated Press
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Jonathan Lucroy had a controversial offseason in which he talked about how maybe it’d be best for him to be traded since the Brewers are rebuilding and losing is a drag. It’s hard to disagree with him, but it’s not the sort of thing players can ever really say without catching a lot of grief. Lucroy caught grief.

This year Lucroy is going to just catch. And, according to this story from Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, he’s going to do it in . . . The Best Shape of His Life:

Lucroy, 29, who has been here since Monday, is in perhaps the best shape of his life after an off-season of rigorous workouts back home in Louisiana with brother David, a pitcher in the Brewers’ farm system. His main goal is to stay healthy and productive after a 2015 season marred by a broken big toe and concussion, with too many hitting slumps in between.

That is the extraordinarily rare straight-up, unadulterated, unfiltered and unironic BSOHL. They were common in the wild until a few years ago but have since become a highly endangered species. How fortunate we are, in 2016, to see one in the wild. In Maryvale of all places.

(h/t to Scott McLune for the heads up)

Jhonny Peralta is in The Best Shape of His Life

Jhonny Peralta
Associated Press
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Cardinals infielder Jhonny Peralta has been pretty consistent over the past few seasons, but back in his Cleveland days he used to have a pattern in which he’d show up to camp a bit chunky some years, svelte in other years and his performance at the plate would improve or decline accordingly. It was kind of annoying for Indians fans, but they got used to it, even if they wondered what things would be like if he was consistently committed.

Things got better once he got to Detroit. He wasn’t always great, but he looked the same from year to year at least, so expectations were never such that Tigers fans, like Indians fans before them, felt as if he could, if everything broke just right, be an MVP candidate. There’s something to be said for predictability I suppose.

Maybe The Cardinal Way is rubbing off on him then, because after two very nice seasons, he’s poised for . . . something big:

https://twitter.com/Frank_Cusumano/status/700701755441553408

Check back in October and we’ll see how that went.