In what can only be considered a reversal of fortune, this year A’s fans are more worried about their pitching then their hitting heading into the 2009 season.
Scheduled staff ace Justin Duchscherer will not open the season with Oakland, and in fact will be undergoing exploratory surgery to see if he does in fact still have an elbow. Also, Gio Gonzalez is hurt and will not be likely to open the season on the big league roster. Mazzaro, Simmons, and Williams have been sent down to minor league camp. So who is left standing you ask?
Dallas Braden is the only pitcher that we know will be in the opening day rotation.
After that it is open to speculation, but most agree that Gallagher and Eveland are near locks to be in that rotation as well.
So who are the last two guys? There are three schools of thought on AN:
Use more exclamation points!!!! (okay I might have made that one up)
Are there other options? Well, it seems pretty late in the spring to be thinking about a “F’n A trade” that might bring in an ace like Peavy or Halladay. So that seems unlikely. Trading for an unsigned vet seems unlikely as well based on Blez’s recent interview with Billy. Possibly the A’s could find a decent upside youngster that is out of options to trade for – as suggested by Ken Rosenthal in his latest regarding pitchers Jason Hammel and Jeff Niemann.
Whatever the outcome, and whoever ends up pitching the first five games for the A’s the one thing we know for sure is that we don’t know for sure who that will be. The other thing we know is that we will have many more online articles and AN FanPosts that will speculate before the actual decision is made.
We can at least take comfort in the fact that the Angels get to open their season with similar doubts and concerns.
Nine days until we get to see real A’s baseball. Can we hurry up already?
(My first DLD, so hope it was not too far below standards, just wanted to have one to keep up some normalcy on AN).