Through the first eight games, the A’s own a 6-2 record and are mixing superb pitching with timely offensive hits. Daric Barton, a young player who hasn’t yet lived up to the immense hype that once surrounded him, is playing his best baseball right now for Oakland.
Barton’s patience is paying off at the plate, as he’s collected 10 free passes and is currently hitting .348/.529/.435 with 7 RBIs. Those numbers are fantastic, and are an indication that Barton is finally coming into his own. Last season, Barton was on the back-burner for most of the year thanks to Jason Giambi‘s homecoming. However, in the 54 games he did manage to play in last year, he hit .269/.372/.413 with 3 HR, 24 RBIs and 26 walks. In just the first eight games Barton has collect 10 walks, compared to the 26 he collected last year in 54 games. He’s getting on base for the A’s, and that’s something they like to see from their players.
And despite only having two extra base hits, Barton’s performance through the first eight games has me extremely excited about this young A’s team. It still early April, but the A’s are playing extremely well on offense and defense. As a team the A’s lead the American League in runs scored (43), and in ERA (2.61). As a team, the A’s are hitting .266/.352/.398 with seven stolen bases (5th in AL). Opponents are hitting a measly .214 off A’s pitchers and as a result the A’s lead the AL with 6 quality starts.
Numbers certainly don’t lie, and the A’s are certainly off to a great start.