You've got to forgive me, but I'm just now beginning to get to know this thing called the "postseason". You can't blame me. The A's haven't really allowed us fans to familiar with October beyond the first week in years past. Well, at least their immediate past.
But one thing that the postseason offers to certain players is a chance to erase 162-games out of our memory. I, for one, couldn't give a damn what Eric Chavez did during 2006 anymore. To me, it matters what he does going forward now. Chavez was a huge target in the Minnesota series because he looked absolutely lost at the plate. I half expected him to walk up to the plate muttering 4 8 15 16 23 42 he was so lost.
But then an odd thing happened. Chavez found his stroke in the A's most important game in 2006. He mashed a home run to right field and stroked an opposite field double and looked more like Chavez 2001 than the limping replica we saw throughout 2006. And suddenly I didn't care that he had his worst offensive season.
Marco Scutaro is a player that I love for his grit and penchant for getting the big hit...granted I complained about the defense repeatedly and I still think his defense hurts the A's compared to Crosby's range, but I don't care about that anymore. He's the main reason the A's finally moved past the first round to uncharted territories.
Esteban Loaiza was miserable at the beginning of the year. Yes, he had one of the best months pitching-wise in A's history, but he still wasn't truly an "A" until he pitched very well in his own personal house of horrors in Game 2 of the Division Series.
Milton Bradley was someone that many A's fans were saying was useless compared to the next Ted Williams that we traded away. Well, you know what, Andre Ethier wound up riding the Dodger pine (in favor of Marlon Anderson) while Bradley helped the A's advance to the ALCS against much stiffer competition. And Ethier can go on to have that great career that many believe he will, I still think the trade was most definitely worth it because the A's might not be where they are today without Bradley, spilled coffee and all.
Now this doesn't apply to a guy like Frank Thomas. He had a great year, so it's become expected of him. Expectations can be a burden sometimes because it means that the only way you can go is down.
So give me a break while I get to know this stranger known as the Postseason. It isn't like the A's have given us an opportunity to really get to know this odd October bedfellow. But one thing that I have learned through the A's experience in 2006 is that sometimes three games or even one game can very quickly make you forget about nearly 200 other ones.