THE PARTICULARS2013: Manager: Who’s new:
Eric Berger knows Raley Field; he watched games at the Triple-A park while growing up in Roseville. He also knows how to pitch, once striking out an area-tying record 20 batters at Woodcreek High School, where he was The Bee’s Player of the Year in 2004. And he knows comebacks after having Tommy John surgery. Now he wants a promotion after going 6-3 for Triple-A Oklahoma City last season. “So excited to be here,” he said.
The River Cats are the gold standard in minor-league baseball in terms of victories, attendance and Raley Field’s appeal to fans and players. And no major-league team has had more transactions with its Triple-A team than the A’s. The River Cats, who last season missed the playoffs for the first time since 2006, seek their 12th South Division title in their 15th season in Sacramento. The pitching staff has major-league experience with Joe Blanton, Joe Savery and Philip Humber, who threw a perfect game for the Chicago White Sox in 2012 but went 0-8 with the Houston Astros last season. The team leader is catcher Stephen Vogt, who started 40 games for the A’s down the stretch last season.
PLAYER TO WATCH
C STEPHEN VOGT
PITCHER TO WATCH
RHP JOE BLANTONComment:
HITTER TO WATCH
– Joe Davidson