Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Big Red

If it's not one guy, it's another. That's what I fucking love about this team. On any given night, a new hero can emerge. And a case for team MVP could be made for about half a dozen guys right now.

That's what separates our mighty A's from those assholes in Anaheim: If Vlad sucks, they ALL suck. The Angels have now lost their last five games. In four of those, their offense has scored three or fewer runs. And as you might expect, Vladdy isn't really knocking the snot out of the ball over that span. He's four for his last 20.

In July, when Vlad hit .208 with a .640 OPS, no one was there to pick him up and the Angels played sub-.500 ball, going 13-14.

And in May, when the reigning AL MVP hit .224 with a .697 OPS, the Angels' hit .245 as a team with a .671 OPS. It was only because of the team's pitching (3.34 ERA for the month) that the Halos were able to avoid disaster.

That isn't the case with our club. There's so many guys that could carry the team for long stretches. Chavy, Crosby, Johnson, Payton. Maybe even Kotsay and Kielty, who have each hit over .320 for an entire month this season. And while I don't think Nick Swisher is at the point in his career where he can go on month-long hot streaks, he CAN end a game with one swing of his bat at any time.

This is why Macha's asinine line-ups continue to frustrate me. The guys who obviously CAN'T get ridiculously hot, Kendall and Hatteberg, continue to get significantly more ABs than the guys who can. Jason Kendall leads the team in ABs THIS month. More than Chavy. More than Johnson. More than Payton. Kendall and his .500 OPS have 25 more AB's than Mark Ellis and his .931 OPS. That's fucking ridiculous!

Imagine if one of Kendall's ABs each game was given to Ellis. How much would the complexion of the game change? If know if I was a pitcher, I'd much rather face a guy that can only hit singles (and not even hit them very often), than a guy that's hitting .300 with some pop. Ellis can make an opposing pitcher pay for a mistake. Take the recent Detroit game against Bonderman as an example. When's the last time Kendall led off a game with a homerun? Or even a double?

Keeping a pitcher on his toes from the get go can do wonders to set the tone of the game. And the tone Jason Kendall's been setting all year sounds like billy goat ass-raping a chimpanzee.

I wish our dumbass manager could see that. I wish he had the stones to finally make the move. Maybe he IS a puppet. I tend to think he's just stupid.


I don't know if any of you noticed, but our mighty A's can clinch the season series with the Angels if they win the next two games. So while a sweep in Anaheim would be sweet for a number of reasons, clinching the series could possibly be the most important . A four-game lead would basically turn into a five-game lead. And with a road-trip to Texas, Cleveland and Boston coming up, our guys could use all the breathing room they could get.

Hopefully our guys can to Lackey early and often and keep that possibility alive.


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