Oakland pride abounds in A's 1st HOF class

Anderson could return on next road trip

September 6th, 2018

OAKLAND -- Donning green jackets, much like the one former owner Charlie Finley regularly sported, members of the A's inaugural Hall of Fame class were honored prior to Wednesday's game with the Yankees.
Inductees Rickey Henderson, Dennis Eckersley, Rollie Fingers, Reggie Jackson, Dave Stewart and the late Finley and Catfish Hunter drew the pregame spotlight on a special night in Oakland.
Finley's son, Paul, and Hunter's wife, Helen, were on hand for the affair, throwing out ceremonial first pitches alongside the inductees to members of the current A's squad.
"It's great," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "We have so many Hall of Famers and great baseball players in the history of the Major Leagues here in Oakland, so I think it's great that we are celebrating."
The group includes five enshrined in Cooperstown -- Henderson, Eckersley, Fingers, Jackson and Hunter -- and another who should be, argued Jackson.
"I think he deserves to be in the Hall of Fame," the man known as "Mr. October" said of Stewart, MVP of the 1989 World Series.

Jackson, meanwhile, is regarded as Henderson's idol.
"You made me go out and play the game the right way, and play the game hard," said Henderson, who greeted the crowd in typical Rickey fashion: "What a day, what a day. I'm proud to be the youngest of all of them."
"I was proud to be an Oakland A," Eckersley said. "Greatest times of my life. Those were magical years that I was here."

Eckersley, who was born in Oakland, spent 12 seasons with the A's, earning four of his six All-Star nods with them. Of recording the final out of the 1989 World Series against the Giants, the 1992 American League MVP said, "I want to wish the 2018 Oakland A's that magic."
"The most special thing for me," Jackson said, "would be to see the A's get a new stadium here in Oakland."

Anderson nearing return
The A's could get lefty back on their next road trip -- they leave for Baltimore and Tampa Bay on Monday -- as they look to restock their depleted rotation.
Anderson threw off the mound Wednesday for the first time since going on the DL last week with a left forearm strain and is scheduled for an extended bullpen session (three innings, 15 pitches each) Saturday.
"If all goes well," Melvin said, "we'll slot him somewhere on the road trip."
The A's have right-hander listed as their starter for Friday's series opener with the Rangers, though Melvin said an "opener" is being considered ahead of him. Twice in four days, the A's used reliever in such a role; they lost both games, but the latter proved far more successful.
Worth noting
• Left-hander Danny Coulombe, designated for assignment Monday, has cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Nashville, the club announced Wednesday.