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^^^^^^^ Approaching Flatline -----------

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The A's aren't dead yet, mind you, but you have to poke around longer to find a pulse and reality is crashing the party. I'm strangely at peace tonight, knowing in my heart that the right team--much as I hate to think or admit it--will go to the post-season this year. I love the A's to death and love their future even more, but...

Zoom out and here's what you see:

  • The A's didn't win the last series in Anaheim; they lost it
  • While fighting for the Wild Card berth, the A's didn't win the series from the Yankees and Indians; they lost both
  • The A's didn't win the series in Boston; they split it
  • The A's didn't sweep the Twins; they won the series (while the Angels swept theirs)
  • The A's, on the heels of all that, couldn't afford to lose tonight; they did
Zoom in and here's what you see:
  • Jason Kendall batting third
  • The designated hitter--a lefty with little power starting against a pitcher who eats up lefties--batting 8th, and bunting a runner over
  • 7 runners left in 3 scoreless innings when the A's needed a run more than they've ever needed a run before
Finally, the A's scored 0-2 runs for the 48th time this year, and I doubt any team in the modern era has gone to the post-season under those statistical circumstances. But you know what was so great about 1999? It was followed by 2000-2003. Stick around.