The A's are trying to set new standards at second base and shortstop this Cactus League season, and one game into it, the reviews are good.
One review of second baseman Jemile Weeks was particularly good.
"He's an All-Star second baseman, I know that for a fact," Milwaukee's second baseman said as the Brewers escaped with a 2-1 win over the A's in the Cactus League opener.
The speaker was the Brewers' Rickie Weeks.
"That's my brother," Jemile said after being told of Rickie Weeks' bragging. "That don't count."
It may count for something, since Rickie Weeks was an All-Star in 2011 and knows what it takes. Jemile was a rising star that same year he debuted with the A's but fell on hard times in 2012, including a demotion to the minor leagues in the midst of a pennant race in August. Now he's trying to climb back.
"I've been there, we all have," Rickie said. "But he's got a very strong mindset. I tried to help by telling him what I'd gone through."
In addition to his mindset, Jemile Weeks also owns a nasty backhand flip. With Jesse Chavez pitching in the second inning, Jemile broke to his left to make a diving stop of a ball hit sharply by Jean Segura. Not only did Weeks track the ball down, but he made a dead-reckoning toss to a player with whom he has scant acquaintance, A's shortstop Hiroyuki Nakajima.
Oakland A's start spring with loss to Milwaukee Brewers
Oakland Tribune | Feb 24