Jed Lowrie was brought to Oakland to serve as a super-utility infielder. The A’s were not asking anymore of the oft-injured infielder, who was coming off a shortened 2012 season in Houston. The A’s had a jammed outfield in addition to an infield with so many moving parts that it seemed unlikely Lowrie would ever need to start.
Things changed quickly, however, for both the A’s and Lowrie. Hiroyuki Nakajima, brought in by the A’s during the offseason, didn’t perform all that well in spring training and was ultimately questioned about his big-league potential. Lowrie, meanwhile, proved to be healthy and ready to go for a new organization by performing well during spring training.
It was an easy decision, then, for the A’s to tab Lowrie their Opening Day shortstop after Nakajima was placed on the disabled-list to start the season. The decision to bring Lowrie to Oakland, so far, at least, has paid off.
Billy Beane hasn’t lost a step it seems when providing his club with adequate roster depth, as Lowrie has been Beane’s best offseason move this year. Lowrie, who is always a health-risk, has stayed healthy so far for Oakland and currently leads the team in average with a .333 mark and his overall slash line of .333/.406/.529 is, for the most part, impressive.
He’s also tallied 3 HR and 15 RBI through the month of April and while his defense hasn’t been as crisp as one would like, Lowrie’s presence in Oakland is certainly being felt in a positive way. The A’s infield as a whole has been rather solid, thanks again to Beane’s increased efforts this winter to add roster depth.
Lowrie was a major spark on offense during Oakland’s impressive nine game win streak earlier in the month, as he got off to a blazing start, tallying 7 RBI during the streak. The A’s get a lot of praise for the starting rotation and strong bullpen they feature, but this season has been all about change. The A’s are not relying so heavily on their starting pitching simply because it hasn’t been as sharp as it could be. Instead, the A’s find themselves placing more and more faith in their offense to keep them afloat and Lowrie is one player the A’s have heavily relied upon this month.