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Jerry Blevins

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Jerry Richard Blevins

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Jerry Blevins was selected by the Chicago Cubs in the 17th round of the 2004 amateur draft. He was signed by scout Brian Williams and made his pro debut that summer. He eventually was traded to the Oakland Athletics with Rob Bowen for Jason Kendall on July 16, 2007. He made his major league debut with the A's in September of that year.

Blevins pitched for Team USA in the 2007 Baseball World Cup a couple of months after his major league debut. He was 1-0 and allowed one hit and two runs in three innings in the Cup while striking out four to help the Americans win their first Baseball World Cup Gold Medal in over 30 years. He gave up two unearned runs in the US's lone loss, to the Italian national team, with his error playing a key role. In the Gold Medal game, he retired the only two batters he faced from the Cuban national team before giving way to closer Jeff Stevens for the save.

Exclusively used as a relief pitcher in the majors, and almost always as a LOOGY, his career high is 63 appearances in 2010, the year he earned his first major league save, and again in 2012, when he was 5-1 and pitched in the postseason for the first time. He made three appearances in the 2012 ALDS against the Detroit Tigers, giving up one hit and nothing else in 3 2/3 innings. He has struck out almost a batter per inning during his big league career, in spite of shuffling continually between the majors and AAA since his debut.

On April 29, 2013, he was the winning pitcher in the longest game by time in Oakland history, against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Blevins came in the game with one out in the 18th inning, taking over for Brett Anderson who had gamely pitched 5 1/3 innings of relief but had to leave the game because of a foot injury. Anderson's name had been inserted in the batting order a couple of innings earlier, when another A's player, OF Chris Young, had to leave because of an injury and the only available replacement was DH Seth Smith. Thus, after completing the top of the 18th without any runs scoring, Blevins had his first major league plate appearance - and only the second of his professional career - in the bottom of the 18th, and he quickly struck out against Barry Enright. But he pitched a scoreless 19th inning, and when Brandon Moss hit a two-run, walk-off home run off Enright in the bottom of the frame, Blevins earned his first victory of the season in a game that had taken 6 hours and 32 minutes to complete, getting credit for the 10-8 win. He went 5-0, 3.15 in 67 appearances that season, pitching 60 innings during which he struck out 52 batters. On December 11th, however, the A's traded him to the Washington Nationals for minor league OF Billy Burns.

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