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Delusional

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Did we really think winning the division was going to be that easy? Did we really think that Mark Mulder would suddenly awaken from his winless slumber?

Did we think Eric Chavez would suddenly start hitting again? Did we really think that Mark McLemore would suddenly learn how to play second base (I'm finally on board with the play Scutaro every day sentiment-that error tonight was brutal)?

I guess I just wanted to believe it would happen. But it hasn't yet.

It's the most crucial, pressure-filled time of the year and who are the A's counting on? Mark Kotsay, Tim Hudson, Erubiel Durazo, Rich Harden and tonight a stellar Joe Blanton. Jermaine Dye has also turned it on offensively, but I'm not sure if I'll ever really be happy with Dye again after his misplay in Texas.

But whether it seems like it or not, the A's are still in the driver's seat. Their closest competitors will be banging heads for four games in the Coors Field of the American League.

The A's get Seattle for four games at home. Yes, Seattle is the hottest team in the division right now, but this is the best the A's could hope for.

Am I being delusional at this point? This team is struggling mightily and while the optimistic fan inside tells me to remain calm, my realistic exterior has me reaching for the panic button.

Especially when the players seem nonchalant about the games:

"Everybody's enjoying playing baseball and just having a good time. It's not life or death. It's a game," Chavez said. "We've just got to try to finish this thing out and get another playoff berth."

You get the feeling that Chavez would just as soon the A's didn't make the playoffs so he wouldn't have to deal with the pressure?