When Adam Rosales walked to the plate right after it was announced at the Coliseum that the A’s had traded for another shortstop in Stephen Drew, he may have wondered whether his chances of getting regular playing time had taken a huge hit. Today, Rosales will start at second base, forming a new double play combination with Drew as Jemile Weeks has been optioned.
The Oakland A’s reinstated Seth Smith from the disabled list, the club announced today. The A’s also placed left-handed pitcher Jordan Norberto on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to August 18 with left shoulder tendinitis and optioned second baseman Jemile Weeks to Triple-A Sacramento. To clear a spot on the 40-man roster for Stephen Drew, the A’s designated right-handed pitcher Graham Godfrey for assignment.
Talk about a move nobody expected to see before this season, when the 25-year-old was considered a breakout candidate by many after hitting .303 (with decent power for a second baseman) and stealing 22 bases over 97 games as a rookie.
Those numbers fell to .220 and 15 steals over 113 games in 2012, and as a result he’s eastward bound. The news hasn’t left Weeks feeling too down, at least outwardly.
The A’s also seemed to irk John Shea by kicking Weeks to the curb in another way:
Insert Barry Bonds joke here. Actually, Weeks wasn’t left out after all.
Phew! Wasn’t going to be able to sleep there for a few days. Back to baseball…
The entire Weeks family has fallen off drastically this year (last year, Rickie and Jemile combined for a total WAR of 5.7 according to Fangraphs; this year their combined fWAR is 0.7), but Jemile’s year hasn’t been all bad on the offensive side. Last year, his average on balls in play was .350, this year his BABIP is .254. That could explain the drop in average to a certain extent. Jemile is also walking over twice is often this season as he did as a rookie, and he was successfully stealing bases at a higher rate (75%, as opposed to a 66.7% last year).
However, Weeks’ power has fallen off quite a bit (same number of triples and homers, but 12 fewer doubles in 67 more plate appearances), and Billy Beane may have wanted to shake things up on a team that has gone 12-12 since going on a 16-2 tear from July 1 through July 25.
While the talent around Weeks has improved in 2012, the A’s and their fans have to hope that Weeks is right about still being a star. He’s produced before, he’s blessed with speed and charisma, and the A’s control his rights for several more years.
If the A’s make it, will Weeks be on the playoff roster?
The whole thing is pretty confusing for a simpleton like me, so maybe someone will have a better answer in the comments. From my understanding, once a player gets sent down to the minors he can’t get called back up for 10 days — unless another player is placed on the DL. And in order to be eligible to play in the postseason, a player must be on either the 25-man roster or the DL on Aug. 31. Since today is Aug. 21, does that mean Weeks can be called up on Aug. 31, therefore making him eligible for the postseason roster? Do the A’s even care? For now, Rosales and Cliff Pennington will share time at second base.