A's maintain status quo past Deadline
'Continuity' important for second-half development
CHICAGO -- Card games and phone apps, rather than live television coverage of the impending Trade Deadline, proved to be the form of entertainment in the A's clubhouse Saturday at U.S. Cellular Field.
Their no-fuss attitude toward baseball's anticipated Deadline was rather fitting, as Oakland came out of the ordeal the same way it entered, with no trades attached to its name.
It was just a month ago general manager Billy Beane expressed an interest in staying the course with his young talent through Saturday's non-waiver Trade Deadline and beyond. Given Beane's well-documented history in the trade market, though, most everyone in the baseball community knew nothing could be ruled out, especially in July.
So for Beane not to pull the trigger may have simply continued a trend of expecting the unexpected.
However, manager Bob Geren believes that, even though Oakland's head honcho didn't partake in his usual wheeling and dealing, the feeling in the clubhouse is that he did in a sense.
"It feels like we have new additions, really, with Brett Anderson back and Conor Jackson coming back," Geren said. "We have guys that are going to get stronger."
That doesn't mean trades still can't happen, though.
Over the next month, deals involving players on the 40-man roster cannot be made unless the players already have cleared waivers. A player exposed to waivers can be claimed by any team and -- if there are multiple claims -- the player would be offered to the team with the worst record.
At that point, a team has 48 hours to either work out a trade with the claiming club or pull the player off waivers. A player can only be pulled back from waivers once, but if he clears waivers either the first or a second time through, a team can attempt to trade him to any club.
Still, Beane and Co. like where this young A's team is headed.
"I'd like to provide a little bit of continuity going into the end of the season and give us a chance to see some of the guys that we originally thought were going to play more to actually play together," Beane said recently. "We've hung in there pretty well."
That's a credit to several impact players, among them relievers Craig Breslow and Michael Wuertz, both of whom swirled the rumor mill in past weeks but remained in green and gold. Assistant general manager David Forst confirmed earlier in the week that both received heavy interest, but the A's weren't willing to part with either.
The only other possible trade candidate was Ben Sheets. But the veteran righty, owner of a $10 million contract and looming free-agent status, learned Wednesday he's out for the year with yet another torn flexor tendon, subsequently putting an end to any potential interest.
Thus, the A's feel confident in moving forward with the youthful band of brothers currently in tow. That will only continue, Beane has said, with improved health -- something the A's hope to see more of in the second half.
Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.