Tuesday, May 27, 2014

An Oakland Athletics "Preview"

Since Rogo of Tigersnark has truly become the Brett Favre of bloggers:  "I retire.  I'm back.  I need a break. Back again.  I'm not sure if I want to permanently quit this thing.  Blogging is hard and I can't deal with it and live life too.  Boo hoo, whine, sob," I have taken it upon myself to write a "preview" of the Oakland As.   I was waiting for Rogo to post his, and when it became apparent that he had no intention of doing so, I decided to write a pale imitation of his series preview.

The Oakland As are the Tigers current competition for best record in the American League.  The club is good, and though the Tigers have booted them from the playoffs in consecutive years, don't take that for granted in 2014.

2014 record so far:  31-20

2013 record:  96-66

2013 record vs Tigers:  4-3 (regular season)

Notable Players

Ricky Henderson - 1406 carrer steals in 25 seasons, first all time, HOF.  No more needs to be said here.

Dave Stewart - I am old, so I remember seeing Dave Stewart pitch.  I was petrified by Dave Stewart's intimidating stare.  I thought that batters must quake facing him.   Then some years later, I heard him talk.  All that fear vanished.

Rollie Fingers - Not quite old enough to have seen him pitch.  Or at least, I wasn't a baseball fan yet.  Handle-bar mustache.  He was only the second reliever elected to the HOF.

Dennis Eckersley - Gave up the famous 1988 playoff home run to Kirk Gibson.  I love him for that.  Still has the same hairstyle.  HOFer.  Now appears as an analyst on NESN.

Many others, but those are the ones I felt like talking about.


Bob Melvin has been managing the Athletics since 2011.  Before that, he managed the Diamondbacks and Mariners.  In 11 years, he has a record of 761-714, for a .516 overall winning percentage.

Top Three Current Players

Josh Donaldson - notably snubbed from ASG last year.  Won't happen again this year.

Yoenis Cespedes - caterpillar eyebrows.

Sonny Gray - tonight's starting pitcher.  Currently boasting 1.99 ERA and 1.088 WHIP.  It may take more than a Zubaz bonfire to get the W tonight, folks.

How Is This Guy a Major Leaguer?

Nick Punto.  KIDDING.  I just remember all the stuff Punto did to the Tigers while in Minnesota, and wanted to dis him.

Easiest Way to Anger Athletics Fans

Remind them that the Tigers ousted them from the playoffs in 2006, 2012, 2013.  Remind them that they lost Frank Thomas to free agency.

Three Reasons to Hate the Athletics

1.  Josh Reddick.  He whined incessantly during the playoffs, and I hated him a lot.  Then I followed him on twitter to troll him, but realized I can't hate him.  He's funny and a big goofball.  Sorry.

2.  Their Ballpark.  O. Co Coliseum?  It's a dump and that name is ridiculous.  Don't bring up to me that the Tigers play at Comerica Park.  That's a fabulous name compared to O. Co.

3.  Nick Swisher once played there.

Fun Fact

During the 2006 playoffs, Jim Leyland, during a post-game interview said, and I quote: "my wife thinks Mark Kotsay is the hottest thing going."  That made me laugh.  A lot.

Season Outlook

If we ever break out of the current pattern of our starting pitchers getting hammered each night, we may see the Athletics again in the playoffs.

Let's all hope Rogo returns from his most recent hiatus to write the next series preview.  Then I won't have to subject you to this swill again.