One of the disadvantages of a young team is the lack of familiarity with the constant travel a season demands. The A's have a great record when they have a day off for travel. (6-1) Without that extra day they are (3-8). Small sample size but getting to be significant.
Last night the offense was missing. It seems we hit into double plays significantly more often in the first game of a series after a travel day. In NY on the first trip we hit into 5 the first game. Last night we hit into four.
I am sure the A's coaching staff are aware of this. I know they adjust the batting practice routine and warm ups depending on the circumstances and weather. Is there anything we might suggest to counteract this trend?
As players get healthy perhaps a system of mandatory days off and setting the starting line-up a day in advance, (pre-travel) might help. Let the players know they have to be prepared to go on short rest. Give them an opportunity to prepare. Give some guys a day off on the travel day so they can prepare to be ready the first game of the series. We do this with starting pitchers already. They seem to be able to prepare well for these games. Perhaps we should do the same for the relief pitchers and the position players.
And whatever they are doing with batting practice after a travel day, I would try something different. It has to be more than a coincidence that everyone is more prone to hit into double plays in those games.
Or is this simply an unavoidable consequence of modern day baseball?