3/14/2014 2:27 A.M. ET
Kazmir finds comfort with roster spot secure
By Chris Gabel / Special to MLB.com
PHOENIX -- A's pitcher Scott Kazmir said after his outing Wednesday that he doesn't put much stock in results this time of year, like so many others.
But he felt very different a year ago.
"Every pitch, I was looking for results," Kazmir said.
Having pitched in just one game in the Majors since 2010, Kazmir signed a $1 million Minor League contract last year with the Indians. He won a rotation spot out of Spring Training and revitalized his career.
"It was just a different beast, where I had to go out and compete for a job," Kazmir said. "This situation is a little bit different, to where I'm back in my comfort zone."
The situation Kazmir speaks of is the two-year, $22 million deal he signed with the A's in December. The financial security also comes with a guaranteed rotation spot this year.
"It's a big difference," said Kazmir, the 2007 AL strikeout leader who pitched in the independent Atlantic League in 2012. "It's just a complete different mindset. Now it's more perfecting my craft, I'd guess you'd say; just specific things I want to work on in my game. Last year, I was just competing no matter what happened."
Melvin successful in introduction to replay system
PHOENIX -- A's manager Bob Melvin said he wanted to test the expanded replay format in his first opportunity Thursday night, and he got his chance early. And he won.
With runners on first and second and no outs in the second inning, Oakland's Coco Crisp hit a groundball to Rockies second baseman DJ LeMahieu, who went to second. Shortstop Cristhian Adames then threw to first in an attempt to complete the double play and first-base umpire Allen Bailey called Crisp out.
Melvin immediately popped up and challenged the call when he reached Bailey.
Replay umpire Marcus Pattillo overturned the call after a two-minute, 10-second review. It was the fourth overturned call of Spring Training.
Melvin also challenged a play at first in the eighth inning that was upheld quickly.
"I think the second one is a little bit more indicative than the first," Melvin said. "You're going to have more camera angles, but those are the ones I want to find out about.
"We had it as semi-inconclusive, and you have to find out which ones they're going to overturn. If it's very close, they'll probably stay with the call that was made."
It was the A's first replay game this season, and Melvin said the day before he was looking forward to getting accustomed to the new dynamics of the system. Melvin even suggested he might challenge a play just to do so.
Cook pleased with slider in bullpen session
PHOENIX -- Reliever Ryan Cook exerted himself on Thursday more than at any other point this spring in his latest bullpen session.
Cook showed up to Spring Training with right shoulder inflammation and likely will start the season on the disabled list.
"I really got after my slider and tried to snap off a strikeout slider," Cook said of the 20-pitch session that followed Tuesday's 30-pitch session.
Manager Bob Melvin said Wednesday that Cook's next step will be to face hitters in live batting practice.
• First baseman Daric Barton (hamstring) is expected to return to the field Saturday as part of the A's split-squad games against the Rangers and at the Giants. Barton last played March 8.
Chris Gabel is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.