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Parker and Miller Up; De Los Santos to Sacramento; Thompson DFA’d

April 25, 2012

What bizarre and somewhat surprising news today. As expected Jarrod Parker was called up from Sacramento to make today’s start against the Chicago White Sox and assume the role of fifth starter. It was known that someone would have to be demoted to make room for him and the fact that that person was Fautino De Los Santos while somewhat surprisingly wasn’t altogether unexpected. De Los Santos has struggled mightily as of late and has a good 9.0 K/9 but a very scary 9.0 BB/9 in his three innings of work. In three straight appearances he has failed to record an out and received a clear vote of no confidence from Bob Melvin as he lost the set up job in spring training and was used sparingly and in fairly low leverage spots so far this year.

That all could be expected to a degree. What was unexpected was that the A’s decided to purchase the contract of right-handed pitcher Jim Miller from Sacramento and designate Rich Thompson for assignment. Why? Miller who turns 30 this Saturday has just 14 2/3 innings in his MLB career. He has thrown nine innings with Sacramento this year with eight strikeouts and two walks owning a 3.00 ERA and 2.09 FIP. While that is good, I fail to understand why that merits possibly losing a pitcher like Thompson who is now DFA’d for the second time this month who apparently left little impression on the A’s front office in his two-third of an inning the other day against Chicago. The concern with the Angels was that Thompson had lost velocity on his fastball, and of the eight pitches he threw the top speed was a 87.2 mph pitch labeled a change up, he also had something labeled a cutter that topped out at 86.9 mph. While Thompson clearly isn’t someone I’d bet the farm on, this is a pitcher who just last year pitched 54 innings of 9.3 K/9, 3.3 BB/9, 0.8 HR/9, 3.00 ERA, 3.27 FIP baseball. Why you would give up on him after eight pitches to add a journeyman 30-year old in Miller who has been solid but not spectacular at Sacramento for three weeks doesn’t make too much sense to me. Thus ends the A’s short period in history as MLB’s only team to ever feature three Australians on the roster.

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