2013 is fast approaching. The last day of the year, gives way to a new year at the stroke of midnight. With this new year comes promises of change. Resolutions are cleverly devised and sworn upon, only to be swept under the rug in the coming months. Old friendships are rekindled, and painful memories are put to rest. We allow ourselves the opportunity, to start fresh. We also reflect on the year in review. For the Oakland Athletics, 2012 was a year none of us will ever forget.
In a season where Oakland was suppose to start step one in yet another rebuild; they defied all logic and captured the American League West inremarkable fashion. With memories still fresh of walk offs, the bernie, and a well deserved standing ovation following an abrupt end to the divisional series. The question remains…Where do the A’s go from here?
Thus far the needs and corresponding wants of the organization have differed this offseason in a fashion that’s new to many fans. With the departure of so many productive and favorite players in recent seasons, it’s a welcome sight that Billy Beane has not had to reinvent his team again this winter. Fans can take solace in the fact that many of their favorites are a lock to return in 2013.
Early on in the winter, news broke that a proposed 2-year contract extension was refused by Jonny Gomes and it became evident that the A’s would lose one of their team leaders. Wasting no time, Beane sent Cliff Pennington packing to Arizona for former All-Star outfielder Chris Young. It was a reactionary move that would would be replicated nearly two months later, when the A’s would lose starting shortstop Stephen Drew to Boston and sign Japanese import Hiroyuki Nakajima on the same day. In an escalating market, the A’s have largely stood pat while other teams have overpaid for marginal players.
From an sentimental standpoint, the loss of Brandon McCarthy to the Arizona Diamondbacks stings. The way the team and the community supported him after his life threatening accident, spoke volumes about the organization and the fans. From a roster standpoint, his departure is manageable. With a starting rotation of Jarrod Parker, Brett Anderson, Tommy Milone, A.J. Griffin and Bartolo Colon armed and ready to go, the A’s should be in good shape heading into 2013. With McCarthy’s extensive history of shoulder injuries, it just didn’t make sense to bring him back at the money he was due to obtain on the open market.
In a world where Joe Blanton and Brandon League receive exorbitant contracts, the A’s have shied away from free agency and major moves, looking to be all the wiser for it. While the inactivity and relatively dormant winter may bore some, just be reminded of the the old saying…If ain’t broke don’t fix it.