We all know that a lot would have to go just right for the 2008 A’s to contend. Today, I offer one analyst’s view of the five things that have to happen for Oakland to turn the corner and surprise the pundits by taking the AL West crown:
#1. Bobby Crosby needs to hit left-handed. That way, all those sliders will hit him in the foot and he’ll have an OBP of 1.000, instead of the .112 he is able to muster as a right-handed batter.
#2. Gil Heredia needs to make the rotation. No one thought he was any good, and everyone thought he was over the hill, back in the late ‘90s and he just kept spotting “nothing-balls” on the outside corner at the knees until the day he woke up and remembered how awful he was. Maybe he’s forgotten again and we could really use a solid veteran starter at the front of the rotation.
#3. Clarence Cockrell needs to be replaced by a Chinese herbalist who can work with Dan Johnson. In just two years, the guy has had double-vision, a torn labia (or labrum – now I can’t remember), meningitis, leprosy, gout, scurvy, and something I understand feels like an earache but is actually “dampness in spleen.” And in the batter’s box – well, I haven’t seen so much rocking back and forth since I rented “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?” (Answer: Danny Putnam)
#4. Daric Barton needs to join the “First basemen who don’t know how to spell Derek” support group, because Derrek Lee is getting lonely and there’s just an awful lot of chips and salsa going to waste each week. How this will help the A’s win the division, I’m not exactly sure. But at least maybe it will help the Cubs.
#5. The A’s need Brown to have a “career year”. Yes, all of them. Actually, the whole electromagnetic spectrum, if possible, from Dick Green and Vida Blue to Bud Black and Frank White. Age could definitely be a factor but there’s no doubting these guys’ talent.
OK, obviously most of this is just intended to be satirical and should be taken with a grain of crack. But I do think Crosby should hit left-handed.