Kyler Murray may have declared for the NFL Draft, but the A's still expect him to be at spring training next month.
"As we're sitting here right now, we expect him to be in spring training," A's manager Bob Melvin told the Associated Press. "At this point in time we haven't heard anything different, and I'm expecting him to be in spring training. If something changes in the meantime, then we deal with it."
Murray is one of 18 non-roster invitees to A's spring training. Position players are scheduled to report to Arizona on February 15. However, the NFL scouting combine begins February 26 in Indianapolis, creating a potential conflict for the two-sport star.
"We're hoping he's (at spring training)," A's general manager David Forst told the AP. "He's an incredible young man and would be a great asset for the A's. We made it clear to Kyler how much we'd like to have him here and how great a baseball player we think he could be."
The A's selected Murray with the ninth overall pick of the 2018 MLB Draft and subsequently signed him to a $4.66 million signing bonus. The deal allowed him to play one more season of college football at Oklahoma, but no one expected the level of success he achieved there.
The dual-threat quarterback led the Sooners to the College Football Playoff and won the Heisman Trophy. Not surprisingly, his NFL Draft stock has since exploded.
Murray officially declared for the NFL Draft January 14, but he still has the option to play baseball. If he elects to play professional football instead, he would have to repay all of his signing bonus to the A's. However, Oakland would not get a compensation pick, though they would still retain Murray's baseball rights.
Murray is projected to be a first-round pick by almost every NFL mock draft and could possibly go in the top-15. If that were the case, he would get significantly more guaranteed money than the A's could offer.
For now, all A's fans can do is wait and see.