While Billy Beane has done a good job retooling the Athletics’ lineup this past offseason, Oakland still heads into the 2011 season lacking some considerable “pop.”
At 36, Matsui is hardly the same person he was back in New York during his “Godzilla” days. DeJesus, who has 61 homers in his career, has never hit more than 13 in a single season. And Willingham, who comes over in the trade with the Nationals, does bring some power to the table, but he’s still not the 30-40 HR guy Oakland so desperately needs.
For the A’s, however, none of this seems to matter.
After all, the offense is improved—at least on paper. Even a mediocre offense in 2011 could propel the A’s into postseason discussion, and the team is definitely confident that their offense has the ability to score more runs than last year’s squad.
Last year, Oakland ranked 23rd in the majors with 663 runs scored, and that number will need to go up if the A’s are to give the Rangers a run for their money.
While the A’s clearly lack power, they are not short in the confidence department. The pitching staff is excited about the addition of Matsui, who they feel will prove to be a big asset to the club this year, and the team in general seems excited this spring.
Every team in major league baseball has a renewed sense of confidence this time of year, but let’s hope the A’s are actually the real deal this year, and not last season’s Seattle Mariners.
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