Mike Fiers doubles down on looking toward future, past Astros scandal


OAKLAND -- He addressed the media, but he didn't address the story.

Mike Fiers stood in front of the scrum at the Oakland A's offices Friday afternoon. He knew what we were going to ask.

"Hey listen, I appreciate the question," Fiers responded. "I just -- I'm not talking about that right now, I'll talk about baseball."

Fiers was at the hub of an investigation put forth by Major League Baseball against his former team, the Houston Astros. The pitcher told The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal and Evan Drellich, the team would use a camera in center field during their 2017 World Series run to help steal signs electronically.

He wanted to clean up the game.

That's not what he and I talked about, but I know that's why you're here.

As he said in the scrum, he wanted to focus on what the A's were going to do. The team that manager Bob Melvin said he was the most excited about since he's been with the A's.

Fiers looks to be part of the Opening Day starting rotation that already appears to be impressive.

"With the core group with what we've done in the past couple years, I think says a lot," Fiers told NBC Sports California. "On paper, it looks really good. I've always said a lot of teams look good on paper, but it's about going out there, performing, staying healthy, and doing the things you need to do to win every night."

Fiers, 34, will take on a more veteran role with the rotation that includes the young names of Jesús Luzardo, A.J. Puk and Frankie Montas. And he looks forward to taking on some of those responsibilities.

"I'm there for anybody," Fiers said. "I want to help anyone I can, especially with Luzardo. He grew up right down the road from me, he trains with me in the offseason now -- a couple times a week and it's just good too have him out there and talk with him and go over certain things so he can learn."

Fiers knows what it's like to get that promotion to the bigs.

"For me, going into the big leagues and coming up, there was so much I didn't know other than just going out there and pitching," Fiers said.

He also said he wants to teach by example.

[RELATED: Where Luzardo, Puk rank among LHP prospects]

"I want to go out there and show them the right way to play the game, the right way to think about it," Fiers said.

"I want to be there for whatever questions they have."

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