Jerry Blevins didn’t know many of his new Oakland Athletics teammates yet th
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MESA Kyle Freeland Jersey , Ariz. (AP) — e left-handed reliever said he has felt right at home returning to the team with which he broke into the big leagues back in 2007.The 35-year-old Blevins rejoined Oakland when he signed a minor league contract earlier this month. The A’s have a talented bullpen but right now Ryan Buchter is the only left-handed option currently on the 40-man roster.“I’ve always had a soft spot for Blev,” Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. “He was a guy I had to send up and down for a while, which is difficult to do, and he’s made a nice career for himself. He has a really good understanding of what he needs to do and is impactful in the clubhouse, too. He’s a smart guy and gets it. It’s nice to have as many of those guys in your clubhouse as you can have.”Blevins has pitched the last four seasons with the Mets but he’s kept an eye on his former team.“It’s like your first love kind of thing,” Blevins said. “You always keep an eye on them, check up on them on Facebook http://www.rockiesfanproshop.com/authentic-chad-bettis-jersey , that kind of thing.”He celebrated his return by posting a handwritten note to Oakland fans on Twitter: “Oakland! Back to where my big league career began. It’s difficult to describe how it feels to return. I’m coming home. That’s it. To the familiar faces by the bullpen and tunnel, right field and left field, I’ll see you soon. I can’t wait to start Chapter 2 of my A’s story. Let’s make it a World Series story.”Blevins compiled a 13-6 record with a 3.30 ERA from 2007 to 2013 with the Athletics. But he’s coming off a rough season with the Mets in which he had a 4.85 ERA over 42 2/3 innings in 64 games.“Up and down, inconsistent,” Blevins said when asked to describe last year. “I never had a clear role. I started slow, got hot, got cold Ryan McMahon Jersey , didn’t get traded. Just inconsistent and that’s out of character for me. I just want to get back to knowing what you get when you put me on the mound. That’s been my entire goal this offseason. I feel great.”Oakland’s bullpen, which compiled a 3.35 ERA, second-lowest in the league last season, was one of the reasons the team won 97 games and secured an American League Wild Card spot.“This is a great team and you’ve got a lot of young talent, some good leadership,” Blevins said. “I’m just trying to fit in and do my part. I don’t want to try to lead. I’m just going to fit in. That’s been the gist of what I want to do. I just want to be a left-handed pitcher and contribute as much as I can to a great team moving forward already.” Versatile Marwin Gonzalez and the Minnesota Twins have agreed to a $21 million, two-year contract B.J. Upton Jersey , a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press.The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity Friday because the agreement is subject to a successful physical.Gonzalez would receive $12 million this year and $9 million in 2020 under the contract.An infielder and outfielder who turns 30 next month, Gonzalez spent the last seven seasons with the Houston Astros. He hit .247 with 16 homers and 68 RBIs last year, down from career bests of a .303 average with 23 homers and 90 RBIs in 2017, when the Astros won their first World Series title.He played 73 games as a corner outfielder last year, plus 29 at shortstop, 32 at second and 24 at first. Gonzalez earned $5,125 http://www.indiansfanproshop.com/authentic-b.j.-upton-jersey ,000 last season after the Astros exercised a club option.There is not an obvious fit on Minnesota’s roster for Gonzalez. The primary returning infield backup for the Twins, Ehire Adrianza, hit .251 in 335 at-bats last season. Gonzalez’s career track record represents a clear offensive upgrade.Minnesota just reached a $25.75 million, five-year contract with shortstop Jorge Polanco, and second baseman Jonathan Schoop ($7.5 million) and first baseman C.J. Cron ($4.8 million) were added this offseason to fill the right side of the infield. Third baseman Miguel Sano, an All-Star in 2017, is still seen as a potential franchise cornerstone Jason Kipnis Jersey , though his career has been beset by injuries.There’s a crowd in the outfield, too.Left fielder Eddie Rosario was the team MVP last year, and right fielder Max Kepler just got a $35 million, five-year contract. Even the designated hitter at-bats are largely spoken for, with five-time All-Star Nelson Cruz the highest-profile addition of the offseason for Minnesota.