Happy New Year & Thoughts on 2013

Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE

As we cruise on into a new year, which means less than three months until Oakland Athletics' baseball resumes, what are your predictions for the upcoming season? Plus clips and articles to love and share!

HAPPY NEW YEAR! I just want to thank each and every member of this AN community for making baseball that much more fun to watch, and the A's that much more fun to root for. It will be really, really hard to top the 2012 season; I have no illusions of this fact, but I'm hoping we get just as much fun this season as the A's try to capture some of last year's magic--and create some of their own.

If you haven't yet seen this clip of all of the A's walk-off wins, it's a must-watch. Trust me, it will make you feel happy inside, even if you are back at work today and wishing for warmer Spring days.

Want another fun article? Here's one about the A's and Orioles' surprising rise to the playoffs, with little money, and little hope at the beginning of 2012.

Running against the wind, the A's kept winning after Beane had shed $14 million in payroll, down to $52.8 million.

"This franchise has a history of exciting teams and some raucous times," Angels second baseman Howie Kendrick said of the A's. "You go all the way back, it's been that way. Guys who played here liked to have a good time. You can kind of feel it with this team. They're confident and they're exciting. They want to show how good they are."

"If I had to use one word to describe us, I'd say overwhelming," said Reddick, an emerging star acquired from Boston. "I don't want to say scrappy -- that's been used too much -- or surprising. I think we're overwhelming, to everybody in the league who thought we weren't going to be any good."


I like that. "Overwhelming". That's how I felt most of the year. Have you seen the Angels and Rangers on paper? Yet the A's just kept winning, and I'm hoping for a lot more of that in the upcoming year.

So here's Jane Lee answering 10 questions about the upcoming A's team.

I think Question #5 is of interest:

5. Just what exactly is Weeks' role?

It will be Weeks who decides this. It was just last winter he was viewed as the lone untouchable player on a roster that received quite the makeover, and in just a year's time he's fallen out of favor with the organization, following a sophomore slump. Weeks appeared to regress offensively -- he hit too many balls in the air -- and defensively, and he was ultimately demoted to Triple-A in August. He will have to prove in a short time this spring that his productive rookie campaign was no fluke, or else he will wind back up in Sacramento. It's likely he only makes the club as an everyday second baseman, rather than in a utility role he wouldn't serve as well as the more versatile Adam Rosales or Eric Sogard.

I don't really want to talk about Question #9, which is "What can Colon do with his second chance with the A's?". Somehow I think, "Get cut from the team in Spring Training?" is not a very PC answer, so I'll have to remind myself that baseball is still a business, even though there are days I'd like it to be 100% about the magic and feel-good stories. That story still doesn't feel very good to me.

What do you think about Jane Lee's answers? Anything you'd add?

Here's to an amazing start of 2013 for everyone, and here's to the best year yet!

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