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Ex-Athletics Manager Art Howe in ICU in Houston Battling Coronavirus

Art Howe, who managed the A's for seven seasons and took them to four consecutive playoff appearances, says he's recovering after being admitted to a Houston hospital earlier this week with COVID-19 coronavirus.

Art Howe, who managed the A’s to a pair of American League West titles during a seven-year run as the Oakland manager, is hospitalized in intensive care in Houston with COVID-19. 

Howe said he checked into the hospital a couple of days ago, but “the time sort of all runs together when you’re isolated like this,” he said. “Maybe it was Monday, but I’m not sure.”

Howe, 73, said he’d been quarantining in his Houston home with his wife, Betty, when he first came down with chills, then started to get weak last Wednesday. But all the precautions he took weren’t enough to keep him from feeling cold and getting weaker.

“It got to the point where it was all I could do to sit in a chair, didn’t even ever want to get up,” Howe said. “No energy to move and no desire to move. That was the time it was time to go to the hospital.”

He went to the hospital by ambulance, which is the last time he’s been with his wife, Betty, with whom he celebrated their 50-year wedding anniversary last year. Betty Howe is at home, also in quarantine, as are two of their daughters who live in the Houston area. None of them has tested positive for the coronavirus.

“That’s the best thing,” he said.

Howe began his A’s career with three consecutive losing seasons, but beginning in 1999 he got the club over .500 with 87 wins, and then went on to 91-, 102- and 103-win seasons before moving on to the Mets. All four of those teams made the playoffs, although none made it past the first round. The 103 wins in 2002 stands as the A’s best record in 32 years, dating back to the 104-win team of 1988.

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“I’ve been hearing from a lot of the guys from those teams,” Howe said. “It’s really great that so many of them wanted to reach out.”

Howe won’t be able to go home until he registers a normal temperature for at least 24 consecutive hours. His temperature has been over 100 degrees every time it’s been checked lately.

“You don’t want to have this; you don’t want to know what it’s like,” Howe said. “I’m hoping I’m on the other side of this. You get tired, you can’t eat. When you try to eat, everything tastes like goo. You have no energy and diarrhea. At least they’ve been able to give me something for this.”

Howe said he has no idea how he came down with the coronavirus. He said he wore gloves and a face mask when going out, but that wasn’t enough.

“All I want to do at this point is to get home,” Howe said. “I’d still be quarantined, but I’d be at home and I’d be with Betty. I’m really looking forward to that.”

Follow Athletics insider John Hickey on Twitter: @JHickey3

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