Our boys in green and gold are getting a jump start on next year right now. The waiver trading deadline is August 31st, and Crisp, Willingham, Matsui, and DeJesus are free agents (to say that many of you know this would be an understatement).
I must admit that I have undersold Crisp this season, and his 4-for-4 game reminds me that he isn't afraid of the big stage, he has playoff experience, is capable of hitting a home run, leads the league in stolen bases, patrols a great CF, and has a T-Rex arm weaker than my wife and the COED softball field. I think he also enjoys being on the A's, and has shown that he would sign a free agent contract with us (as evidenced 2 years ago).
Willingham is a no-brainer. We need right-handed pop and his injury history makes him affordable. He also ACTUALLY LIKES PLAYING FOR THE A'S.
I can say goodbye to Matsui and especially DeJesus (the biggest acquisition bust in recent memory). The A's have some potential swingers in AAA (in all senses of the word I'm sure - Taylor, Carter, and Miller), and a solid OFer in Sweeney, who will play good D and hit a solid .285 for you.
I'd be excited to see something like this next season under Bob Melvin:
1 Jemile Weeks, 2B
2 Coco Crisp, CF
3 Brandon Allen, 1B (He's shown he can mash in NY, and you know what Frank Sinatra says about NY)
4 Josh Willingham, LF
5 (GIVE ME ANOTHER FREE AGENT PLEASE, OR TRADE THE FARM FOR A STUD), 3B
6 Michael Taylor, RF
7 Chris Carter, DH
8 Suzuki / Recker, C
9 Cliff Pennington, SS
For christmas I want Willingham, Crisp, and a 3Bman. Sizemore kills Lefty's I'll even take a lefty 3Bman that can platoon vs Righties! (Eric Chavez is my favorite player, but no I need someone who can give me more than 50 AB's!)