Can I see a show of hands for those who woke up yesterday with visions of Billy Beane adding that elusive final piece to your Oakland Athletics?
Maybe you were holding out hope for the likes of a starting pitcher (Bud Norris, Phil Hughes), a reliever (Luke Gregerson, Oliver Perez), or a fictional offensive upgrade. Unless your list contained Tuesday night’s acquisition of Alberto Callaspo, it’s more than likely the trade deadline expired right before your eyes with little more than a whimper and sigh of disappointment.
Wednesday’s disenchanting loss to the Toronto Blue Jays by way of passed balls, complete lack of clutch hitting, and combustible late-inning relief did little to promote good feelings among the fan base. The ensuing third consecutive walk-off victory by Texas Rangers, only extrapolated the negativity and shrunk the Athletics divisional lead to 4 games. All in all, it wasn’t the most rewarding day to wear green and gold.
But mark my words faithful fans, hope is on the horizon. As the calendar turns to a new month, and a new day take solace in the fact that the Athletics are very much in the drivers seat. Bottom line is this people: The Athletics are in first place by a decent margin with two months left in the season. In what is likely to be a two-horse race to the end, the best is yet to come in the fight for the Western Division Crown.
Friday, marks the start of the battle for division supremacy. The suddenly hot Rangers, will come into town on the heels of a 4-game winning streak and just 3 1/2 games off the Athletics pace. Almost instantaneously we have reached crunch time, so let’s get serious. The next two months will determine the regular season fate of the Athletics. Whether or not Beane makes another move via revocable waivers, as he did with Stephen Drew last season is yet to be seen. The overall lack of activity yesterday, may lead to a creative and active month of August as far as transactions are concerned.
Regardless of what happens on paper, the Athletics goal to repeat as division champions is obtainable. To take a page from the book of Lebron, it’s our job now to be a witness. So join me.