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More on Chavez

The A’s are still holding out hope that Eric Chavez will be able to return healthy next season. A’s assistant GM David Forst says that Dr. Robert Watkins, who will perform Chavez’s June 23 back surgery, believes Chavez can rehab and be ready for spring training in February. But Forst added that the picture will be clearer after surgery. I’d certainly expect the A’s to pursue a full-time alternative at third base during the offseason, and the front office has hinted that will be the case. But Chavez has a year left on his contract (at $12 million), and he’s been determined to give the A’s some production in return for that.

Watkins also performed Chavez’s microdiscectomy in October 2007. It’s worth noting that this is not the complicated spinal fusion surgery that has been mentioned as an option for Chavez, which would definitely end his career. But Chavez told me recently that any type of surgery, even microdiscectomy, would probably leave his back too unstable to play. Tough to predict what this means for his future … Former A’s outfielder Mark Kotsay is one player who has had two microdiscectomy surgeries and returned to the field …

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Talkin’ NFL while waiting for a Kotsay trade

Anybody mind if I take a detour from the usual fare this morning? After all, talking football after the NFL’s divisional round is a heckuva lot more appealing than anything baseball has to offer right now. I mean, the A’s are bracing to trade Mark Kotsay (big whoop!) to the Atlanta Braves (it should happen today); Roger Clemens’ lawyers are lawyering (a tired story already), and Johan Santana is still a Twin (can’t they get a move-on with that deal).

Anyway, the point is, baseball is a feeling a bit tired. I’ll get back to blogging about the grand ol’ game as the week goes on, but right now, what’s standing out the most to me from the weekend was the press conference held by Terrell Owens after the Cowboys bit the bullet against the New York Giants on Sunday.

If you saw the clips of T.O. or read some of the accounts, then you’re aware that the former 49ers wide receiver let loose a flood of tears in front of reporters.

The question: Was it an act?

I didn’t see it as such. Now I know I’m not nearly as up-to-speed on the personalities in that league as I am in baseball, but it seems to me that Owens did a lot of growing up this season. He rarely griped about himself. There were no off-the-field theatrics. And he didn’t throw any teammates under the bus.

In short, he seemed to grow up. At no point, did the Cowboys’ season revolve around what T.O. was doing, and at no point, did T.O. take steps to make sure it would. Should give faith to the cynical — and I’m in that camp more than most — that athletes can change their stripes. Took T.O. longer than most to realize that the less he draws attention to himself, the better it works out for everybody, including himself. But at least he seemed finally to figure it out.

Listen to the various talk shows this morning driving to the office, and I was surprised to hear how many people thought it was a premeditated stunt on Owens’ part, and that all he was showing were crocodile tears? Wonder how many of those were 49ers fans?

Anyway, figured it’d be an interesting place to start the discussion this morning while we waited for the Kotsay deal to come down. Tell me what you think.