The Value Of Sitting On The Bench

Nothing drives A's fans crazier than having Aaron Cunningham sit on the major league bench when he could be starting for the A's or starting for the Rivercats, but is doing neither. Thing is, the A's have done this numerous times -- with Cunningham, with Buck, with Barton -- where they have called a player up only to play very little before being sent back down.

But in some of those instances, the A's must have known what they were doing. In other words, it wasn't as if circumstance got in the way of "the best laid plans," it was that it must have been the plan. Cunningham is a good recent example. When he was called up, the A's knew he could be getting ABs every day in Sacramento and knew he was on the roster as they rather consistently passed him up for three other choices and relegated him to "defensive replacement duty." He could have started every day for Oakland, he just didn't; he could have been left in Sacramento to play every day for the Rivercats, he just wasn't.

In today's Chronicle, in a blurb titled "Everidge now a pine-time player," Susan Slusser notes that Barton's return, coupled with Nomar's presence, likely means bench time for Tommy Everidge. Now granted, Everidge is older and not the prospect that these other examples are, but perhaps he can still reap the benefits of whatever it is the A's feel are the benefits of sitting on a major league bench. Everidge says he used the first two games of the series for picking some of the veterans' brains, specifically asking Bobby Crosby about handling a bench role. So that's certainly useful -- Everidge probably now has a better understanding of how to get your father to whine on your behalf even though the real problem is that you haven't performed well for 5 years. But seriously...

My question today assumes that the A's must believe that for a young player, sitting on the major league bench soaking up whatever you can soak up by sitting on the major league bench, can at times be more useful for a young player than playing every day in Sacramento for those 2-3 weeks. Is there any validity to this?

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Athletics Nation

You must be a member of Athletics Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Athletics Nation. You should read them.

Join Athletics Nation

You must be a member of Athletics Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Athletics Nation. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker