Sure, Frankie T. is batting about a third of his weight. And, Sure Kendall and Ellis are bookending the lineup with averages below .200.
But through 9 games, the A's offense is averaging almost 5 run per game. We notice the offense, but that doesn't mean the offense is the problem.
Through 9 games, our HURLers are averging giving up exactly 5 runs a game. I'm not going to go through individual examples, because of the favorite AN response of "small sample size.", and my issue isn't with the pitchers, and their overall quality. This is a upper-tier pitching staff...no doubt about it.
This rant has more to do with the statement we so often here... Pitching wins. Often its talked about in October, but I personally feel that pitching is the root of baseball success. It get's more of a notice than Offensive and Defensive lines gets in Football, but still pitching as a whole is routinely outshined by offense (see: the steroid scandal over the past few years).
Ask the Atlanta Braves why they've been successful since mullets were cool. Ask the Chicago White Sox why they've got a World Championship. Ask the Rangers why they haven't been successful for 10 yrs even though they score runs like madmen. Ask the Yankees why they're no longer winning World Championships. Ask the Giants and the Cubs what Dusty Baker can't manage. You'll get the same answer. It's the Pitching, Stupid.
Break down the nine games, The easy part is to say when the A's pitchers are good...they win. Once again...not an impressive thought. Even RA Dickey has pitched a shutout. When Starting Pitchers dominate...teams win. Witness the 28 innings or so of this past weekend.
The problem comes in when you look at WHY losses happen. In the 4 losses, it's been pitching...and Starting Pitching that has struggled. Really, these past two games were lost by the pitchers. 6 and 5 runs on offense should be enough to win games.
Which brings me to my Billy Moment. Billy clearly understands this thought since he has 3 starters in AAA with major league experience and he continually is dealing to provide AAA depth in the bullpen as well. He knows what wins, and he knows that even with some recent bumps in the pitching road...the A's should be built to succeed.