The road hasn’t helped A’s cause so far

I thought perhaps the A’s fortunes might change once they headed out on the road against some lighter competition. So where do they go from here? They left Minnesota on Wednesday having been swept in three games by the Twins, whose 18-32 record is the worst in the American League. As much as we talk about the A’s terrible offense — and it has been remarkably poor — what has to be disheartening for this team is that the breakdowns have come in all areas at various times. They got a bit of hitting on Monday only to see the bullpen let them down both Monday and Tuesday. They got a subpar starting effort from Tyson Ross on Wednesday, and the rotation in general has not been as air-tight as it was to start the season. So it’s not just the hitting, although I detail how amazingly bad Oakland’s offensive numbers have been in my game story for Thursday’s paper. The A’s will try to change their luck starting Friday against the Royals (21-28).

I’ll throw this question out there: How much impact do you think Yoenis Cespedes will have when he arrives? He’s supposed to come off the DL for Friday’s series opener. Given where the A’s sit in the standings, should we expect him to make that much difference? What about Manny Ramirez? The A’s have dropped five games in the division over the past 10 days and trail Texas by nine games. It’s still early, but that’s a lot of ground to make up, and I don’t know if the addition of those two hitters can help them jump back in the division race. The Angels are really turning it on, so that’s two teams the A’s have to catch up to.

Here’s something else worth pondering. If Ramirez isn’t brought up soon, and if the A’s continue to sink in the standings, you have to question whether it’s even worth bringing him up at all. If Ramirez is an impact hitter and he’s helping Oakland challenge for a postseason spot, by all means he should be in there. But if the A’s fall out of realistic contention, then he’s simply going to take at-bats away from Seth Smith or Jonny Gomes or Collin Cowgill or some combination of players. And if the A’s aren’t contending, then they need to continue finding out if those players are pieces of the puzzle moving forward. We know that Ramirez probably is not after this season …

–Here’s a piece on the Royals posting their first winning record in May in 12 years. In this notebook, you can read about George Brett finding his dog through Twitter, and a former A’s pitcher who may face his old team Sunday.

Joe Stiglich

  • Stan

    I thought Gomes would be more then what we’ve seen.

    Its like the whole team awoke from the hypnotism they were under..and are now the team we thought they were in February.

    When you have a GM who knows he can’t be fired…this team is what you get.

  • felix jose

    Athletics have been shut out 9 times this season; but what do you expect? They have a bunch of Triple-A candidates on a big league roster and a number of injuries to key players. Let’s be honest, couldn’t we see this one coming?


  • Guitarguy

    There have been too many hitting coaches the last 3 or 4 years to blame it on them. Time to point the finger at Beane and the offensively challenged goons he runs out every year, the same 12 or so, like Barton, Pennington, Suzuki, anyone playing third. Time to admit Beane couldn’t find a talented ball-player if he were a piece of hay in a haystack. And Wolfman Lou and Gap Man love those luxury tax checks that make the organization profitable, year after year. Cespedes may be the real deal, but Beane will fire-sale him when his free-agency period kicks in. The rest, save Reddick, well I would rather watch Charley Sheen and Corbin Bernsen faking knowing how to hit and throw than see these guys faking knowing how to hit and throw. Bring back LaRussa.

  • Stan

    Its kinda obvious Joe..that last contract for Ramirez was a going away gift for his retirement..and use for a few months of the penultimate gym in the world,the minor leagues. Along with brisk exercise.

  • Stan

    Greg Caderat made a great point..if Manny cant hit..he’s slowing down the development of some AAA prospect. Taking away at bats,etc.
    If Manny doesn’t catch fire..he’s going to be released. Why add the embarrassment of a 40 year ex steroidal player who isn’t hitting his own weight. Soon,he wont be hitting Tim Lincecums weight.

  • How John Fisher can increase profits-fire Slick Billy. Think about it-the Fisher family can hire anybody‚Äôs drunken uncle for a bottle of Ripple to trade multi All STARS for A ball,254 hitters or 1-4 pitchers.