Lefties Savery, Abad among bullpen hopefuls

Lefties Savery, Abad among bullpen hopefuls

PHOENIX -- Newly acquired A's reliever Joe Savery won't join the team for workouts until Thursday, but he'll be watched closely when he does.

"He'll get a long look, definitely," manager Bob Melvin said Tuesday, a day after the A's claimed Savery off waivers from the Phillies.

Melvin has a handful of relief arms vying for just two open bullpen spots, but Savery is on a short list of left-handers, which aids his cause. But, unlike fellow southpaw Fernando Abad, Savery has a Minor League option remaining, potentially lending Abad the upper hand to break camp with the big club.

Abad, who was acquired in a November trade with the Nationals, pitched to a 3.35 ERA in 37 2/3 innings with Washington last year, averaging 7.6 strikeouts and 2.4 walks per nine innings. He spent 2010-12 with the Astros and has a career record of 1-14 with a 4.56 ERA.

Melvin has seen him throw twice this spring.

"Lot of life to his fastball, hides the ball a little bit and keeps the ball down," Melvin said. "He's not throwing a full complement yet, and to really know guys it takes in-game situations, but it looks like he definitely knows what he's doing with his fastball."

Savery, meanwhile, is fresh off an encouraging 18-game stint with the Phillies last year. Opponents hit .205 against him, and he had a 3.15 ERA and two saves in that span.

"Looking at the numbers, he looks pretty good," said Melvin. "Until we get him here and see what he has to offer, we'll see. We've gotten some pretty good reports on him, and Brandon Moss played with him for a little while, too, and had some good things to say about him. Anytime you can get added depth, especially from the left side, you gotta consider yourself lucky.

"Moss said that when he was with him, the guy was dominating, and almost kind of compared him to [Sean] Doolittle when he first got here. We'd take that."

Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.