Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Slap Hitter: A's the Best of the Worst

Tue, Aug 11, 2009 at 12:30 PM

The tour de cellar continues tonight at Baltimore. The Oakland Athletics have been full of run and fun since the schedule maker blessed the boys with consecutive series against the Little Sisters of the American League Poor. The Kansas City Royals first felt the wrath of Tommy Everidge and now the Orioles are getting a taste of Cliff Pennington, and based on the 9-1 whipping they endured last night, it's clear they don't find it to their liking

The tour de cellar continues tonight at Baltimore. The Oakland Athletics have been full of run and fun since the schedule maker blessed the boys with consecutive series against the Little Sisters of the American League Poor. The Kansas City Royals first felt the wrath of Tommy Everidge and now the Orioles are getting a taste of Cliff Pennington, and based on the 9-1 whipping they endured last night, it's clear they don't find it much to their liking.

The A's are sloughing off their old skin, and emerging as, well, it's hard to say. We're playing a bunch of 4-A players (top-notch in the high minors, not quite major league caliber), and that works fine as long as we're playing quadruple-A opponents. But after this series, we're plum out of last-place teams and some of our opponents the last two months will be good ones. And yet, like an East Bay summer it seems that the fog took longer than usual to burn off, but we've got good weather until sunset.

The stats say whatever you want them to say, but the fact that there are so many bigger numbers when the A's are hitting is hard to twist. The batting averages are at about .280 and we're singling and doubling our way into single and double run innings every game.

Whether it translates into a bounce to take into 2010 is a little premature. But it feels like the brain trust is liking the stolen base, and normally poker-voiced Ken Korach couldn't resist a little crush on Rajai Davis last night on the radio-cast. And I get it. Jack Cust, the one hold over from the past is the one regular who looks out of step. Step lively is the name of the game we're playing now. The conquerors of the worst aren't going to win squat this summer, but for the first time since Opening Day they're worth catching.....if you can catch them.— Kibby Kleiman

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