Friday, May 30, 2008

Slap Hitter: Blogger gets the call to join the A's (not us)

Fri, May 30, 2008 at 2:30 PM

Blogger Brad Ziegler may be called up to the big club this weekend according to the folk at athleticsnation. Slap Hitter's cool with being passed up, knowing that long relief isn't really our thing. We'll let Ziegler blaze the trail of Throws Right/Blogs Both before getting ready to report for duty ourselves. Of course we didn't have to toil with the Batavia Muckdogs in the New York Penn League to get to Oakland either.

The Ziegler story's a good one. The only fly ball in the ointment is the fact that as big Z is being called up, half the rest of the team limped out of yesterday's 12-0 blitz en route to the disabled list. One of the walking wounded was not starter Dana Eveland who could have hurt his neck twisting around to see all the line drives belted by the Blue Jays in the homestand finale. Perhaps the call-up is in anticipation of the grueling Texas trip ahead, one where the Athletics often need the full bullpen to keep the score under two digits, like yesterday. Um, bad example.

Instead for fans who say they can't tell the two Sweeney's apart, no problem. Neither is going to suit up for a week, nor is A's regular DH Frank Thomas who celebrated his 40th birthday by pulling up lame. The second shift is highlighted by the call up of Carlos Gonzalez, one of the sackfull of prospects hauled in this winter. Bobblehead Travis Buck returns as does Kiko Calero who I sort of forgot was even on the roster. Maybe the A's have time to play some ice-breakers on the plane to Texas, so that they can recognize who to throw the ball to as it rattles around the outfield fences.

Among the excitement of a brand new roster halfway through the spring quarter, let's not forget the day began with the first time promotion of Ziegler, who has gotten a lot of love for being a blogger-starter who converted into a blogger-submariner and now has a role as a blogger-closer. His Gettin' Ziggy With It columns have endeared him to the fan that buys a game program for the articles. Mostly set up in a Q and A format, Ziegler shares what life is like in Midland, Texas and also from places where they have internet access. No real deep revelations or turns of phrase, but the postings have endeared him to a fan base that is thrilled that one of their own is going to the Show.

The author is likely to draw the get-the-righty-to-hit-into-a-double-play-type-work to begin his big league career and if that was good enough for Jeff Tam, it should be good enough for Chad Bradford, I mean Brad Ziegler. Here's hoping the A's keep it close enough to need that sort of specialized help this weekend. And with the Sacramento to Oakland minor league shuttle system beginning its daily summer run, here's rooting for Ziegler to do something worth writing home about.— Kibby Kleiman

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