I am starting to remember why I stopped liking the Twins.
The A's try to put last night's come-from-ahead loss behind them, and salvage a split of this four-game series. This is a critical stretch for the Home Nine, and if they are unable to play themselves back into the division race, it won't be for jet-lag.
Aside from their visit to the Windy City to begin the month, the A's won't play outside of California for the remainder of June; a rather comfy string of 25 games within state limits until they head to Cleveland for the 4th of July weekend.
Next month is not nearly as kind, so now is the time to make a move.
I made a comment during the win streak that the offense was still a concern, and while my methods were askew, the point was there, somewhere. The A's have managed nineteen hits their last four games, and take away that late 5-run explosion Tuesday night, have just ten runs during that same stretch. And if that is too small sample size for you, well the A's are still residing on the wrong side of the American League in the categories that matter (dead last in batting, slugging, and OPS).
That's a discomforting development even when the pitching is lights out, but when it's not- and now we can add an increasingly vulnerable bullpen to the mix- it's enough to cause heartburn, fits of rage, uncontrollable sobbing, and all kinds of terrible things. Basically AN at is bleakest.
The problem is, options are few, which is why you'll continue to see names like Crosby, Hannahan, and Davis in the line-up.
A quick note on Braden's post-outing interview. I didn't hear it but I imagine he said all the right things, as any teammate would, even after Wuertz surrendered the game-tying homerun. It called to mind the time when Dennis Eckersley twice blew saves for Dave Stewart in back-to-back attempts at his 20th win. On both occasions the A's emerged victorious, with Eck "earning" the "W". Said Dave Henderson after the second time, "Eck's just trying to get to 20 before Stew."
While we can sit here and surmise how funny it would have been had Braden expressed what he had to surely be feeling inside, the superstitious side of me wishes these interviews would actually wait until after the game.
Oh well, just a thought.
Game time is12:35PM. The usual stuff to follow.