Well happy birthday to me. Last year, on my birthday, I got exactly what I wanted: a closer. It was a year ago today that Beane pulled the trigger and brought Octavio Dotel to the A's--and say what you want about Dotel, but without him joining the bullpen in 2004 it would not have been the A's division to lose in September.
So what am I hoping for, asking for--nee begging for--on my birthday this year? Hmm...what would I like...well, maybe, I suppose...a Mark Kotsay contract extension? Please, Billy, pleeeeeeeeeease? I swear I'll walk him every day, I promise I will! Please? Ok, I'm going to stop before I lose my dignity.
Oakland starts a three-game series tonight, playing host to their cross-bay rivals from San Francisco. The A's are 1-0 against the Giants so far this year. That is correct--they were, however, 0-2 against the Gigantes. Joe Blanton, 3-1 with a 2.60 ERA his last 4 starts, matches up against another young guy, Jeff Fassero. The starting lineups are as follows.