A's Make First Cuts from Big League Camp

The Ides of March coincided with the first cuts from Oakland A's big league camp this spring. The A's sent down 11 players to minor league camp. The A's will play their first minor league spring games on Monday.

A's Re-Assign 11 to Minor League Camp

The Oakland A's made two sets of cuts from big league camp on Sunday, sending down 11 players to minor league camp. Right-handers Raul Alcantara, Arnold Leon and Chad Smith and left-hander Eury De La Rosa were optioned to the minor leagues, while non-roster pitchers Angel Castro, Jim Fuller, Rudy Owens and Matt Buschmann and position players Bruce Maxwell, Alden Carrithers and Niuman Romero were re-assigned to minor league camp.

Alcantara is still completing his rehab from Tommy John surgery and will likely begin the year on the disabled list. He was optioned to Double-A Midland and should spend the bulk of the season there once he is healthy.

Leon was a surprise early cut from big league camp. The right-hander made three appearances in big league games this spring and tossed four scoreless innings. Manager Bob Melvin told the A's beat writers in camp that Leon was sent down primarily because he had a big workload last season and the A's weren't going to have any starts available for him in big league camp this spring. Leon should be part of the Triple-A Nashville rotation. He threw more than 200 innings last year between the minor leagues and the Mexican Winter League.

Smith allowed one run in three appearances this spring. He was acquired at the start of spring training on a waiver claim from the Detroit Tigers. De La Rosa, also in his first A's camp, allowed two runs on four hits with five strike-outs in four innings this spring. Both are likely to be part of the Triple-A Nashville bullpen on Opening Day.

Castro, Fuller, Owens, Buschmann, Carrithers and Romero will be competing for spots on the Nashville roster while in minor league camp the rest of this spring. Maxwell is likely to join Alcantara in Double-A Midland this year.

Ravelo Undergoes Successful Surgery

On Friday, prospect Rangel Ravelo had successful surgery on his right wrist. The doctors made a partial repair of the ECU tendon in that wrist. Ravelo is expected to be held out of baseball activities for the next six-to-eight weeks. He may need several weeks playing in extended spring training games after he is cleared to return to the field before he can be assigned to a full-season affiliate. Ravelo was acquired by the A's this off-season as part of the Jeff Samardzija trade.

Zito Tosses Four Scoreless

Barry Zito's quest to return to the big leagues received a boost on Sunday when he tossed four scoreless innings to finish out the A's 5-2 win over a Milwaukee Brewers' split-squad on Sunday. Although he faced mostly Brewers' minor leaguers, Zito's performance was still impressive. He allowed only one hit and walked none. Zito also recorded five groundball outs, including a double-play. He has a 4.15 ERA in 8.2 innings so far this spring. He has struck-out four, walked one and allowed six hits.

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