FanPost

No Reason to Panic.

 

Ok, there is no denying Cust and Thomas have been disappointing so far. I don’t feel like justifying that observation as I’ve done it in like 10 other threads, but basically Cust has shown no power, very little ability to hit fastballs, and does nothing consistently besides walk and take pitches right over the middle. Thomas is getting old, and while making contact he is not a guy who benefits or helps a team with singles. To help this team out he needs to hit for power, a .220 average is not difficult to replace. The singles should be reserved for Ellis, Sweeney, Davis, Barton, or whoever hits in front of Thomas. HE DIDN’T GET THE NAME THE “BIG HURT” FOR DRAWING WALKS AND HITTING BLOOPERS. Yes, I know he has a decent OBP, but the walks that inflate it are not as valuable as those extra base hits with guys on in front of him (that is, if there is an occasional A on base). 

Now before the season, I think Billy had a little bit better hunch that this team would be successful than he led on to.  It wasn’t going to be that hard to top the offense last year, or for the last few years for that matter. It’s not like Kendall, Kotsay, Stewart, Scutaro, Swisher, and Johnson were tearing up the league; plus having BoCro healthy would help as well.  The addition of Thomas was a great idea given the teams fast start, but if the team begins to peter out here over the next few weeks I could see a total revamp of the outfield coming up. Ironically this team’s success over the next couple weeks will probably correlate heavily to whether Thomas and Cust start doing what they are on the roster for, hit for CONSISTENT power. If they don’t I’d be willing to bet Davis, Thomas, and Cust will be the first to go in favor of a younger core and starting outfield of RSweeney/Denorfia, CarGon, and Buck. If the team still continues to struggle, and Barton and Suzuki are showing no signs of improvement then it's likely that Brown and MSweeney will probably be gone as well. At that point the front office can go back to saying it was a rebuilding year, and no one outside of Athletics Nation will even really notice.  It's not all bad though...

I'll be the first to say I’ve been a little more antsy with my critiquing of Cust and Thomas lately. Mainly because living on the east coast, I wanted to see one of the more exciting guys in Buck and CarGon get called up for the ATL series b/c I’m not sure when I’ll get to see this team play again. Plus, the one time I did see Buck was the July 24th game in Anaheim last year, where he absolutely dominated. The thing to keep in mind is that guys like Barton, Buck, Hannahan, and Suzuki are supposed to struggle.  They are all going to have tough stretches this early in their careers. Just look at how the god of all rookies, Evan Longoria, has been faring as of late. The things to not accept or try and justify are the guys who are supposed to be performing consistently, but actually playing like rookies. There is no justification for what Cust and Thomas are doing right now, they have been flat out terrible. Hopefully they come out of it, and play to their abilities, but if not…well, the team will still be ahead of where everyone thought they would be, and we’ll get to watch some young guys bust their butts and have a lot of fun.

 

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