Open Thread - Game 19: A's vs. Dodgers

Whenever someone mentions the Dodgers while on-air, the local Fox affiliated radio station down here in SoCal (AM 570) constantly loops a sample of a caller referring to the team as the "Doyers, Doyers, Doyers." It's a pretty funny little bit and as a result of that constant gimmick, I've started calling them the Doyers myself. Today, the Atleticos will host a split-squad contingent of said Doyers at Phoenix Municipal Stadium.

The original, and arguably only legitimate, Los Angeles team will send the $47 million man Jason Schmidt to the mound as part of his latest quest to get back on the field and reward Ned Colleti for his considerable investment of several winters past. As you might recall, Colleti, former SF Giants assistant GM, nabbed Schmidt off the free agent market in December of 2006 for 3 years, 47 million. At the time, many experts, including ESPN's Keith Law, lauded the move as one of the shrewdest of the off-season. A little over two years later, the move looks foolish. During the timeframe of the deal, the oft-injured Schmidt has only made 6 starts for the Dodgers, all of which occurred in the 2007 season (that's works out to about $5 million per start and that does not include Schmidt's $15 million 2009 salary). Joe Torre seems to think that Schmidt is still a little ways away from being ready for the regular season, but at one time Schmidt was one of the better pitchers in the NL, so I hope he can figure his stuff out at some point this season and contribute to the Doyers....just not today or the few games the A's play the Dodgers in interleague play this season.

(Luckily for the A's, Manny will not visit Phoenix Muni today, as he is taking a scheduled day-off from game-action.)

On the other side of the ledger, the Green and Gold will send the greenest member of the MAC pack to the mound today in the form of Trevor Cahill. I'm hoping that Trevor doesn't suffer any sort of Samson-like drop off in effectiveness after he buzzed-off his moppy locks and is now sporting a shaved head under his bill.

So far this Spring, the MAC has been all the rage at A's camp, especially now that it's looking like Duchscherer will start the season on the DL and will thus leave the A's with at least two openings to fill in the starting rotation for at least the first week of the season. My quick take: if any or all of these three guys keep mowing down Cactus League hitters over the next three weeks, it just might become obvious to all observers that they are among the best five starters on the team right now. If that were to be case, then I say, service-time and "seasoning" be damned...the A's have more than enough offense, defense and bullpen pieces to cushion these young guys as they get acclimated to the major leagues, which might not take as long as some might fear. So with that, good luck Trevor!

In somewhat related news, the A's trimmed their Spring roster down a tad about cutting/optioning/reassigning several "on the bubble" players this morning. Among the notables are Jerome Williams (reassigned to minor league camp) who is now effectively out-of-the-running for one of the open rotation spots and who will therefore open the year at Sacramento. Sean Doolittle, who is having a fabulous Spring, was also sent to minor league camp, likely to get the most at-bats as possible now that Barton seems to be back in big league shape.

Lineups

Rajai - CF

Buck - RF

Garciaparra - DH

Giambi - 1B

Powell - C

Crosby - 3B

Denorfia - LF

Hannahan - 2B

Pennington - SS

Doyers

Kemp - CF

Ausmus - C

Ethier - RF

Loney - !B

Blake - 3B

Pascucci - DH

Repko - LF

Castro - SS

Abreu - 2B

 

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