DLD 8/7/06 -- This Team Has Heart

    Lot's of stuff to talk about, but I just have time to pass along this lovely, but sad, story from today's L.A. Times.[registration required, but it's free]

    I hope I speak for most of us when I  say that we love our A's as much for who they are off the field, as what they do on it.

    The item tells the story of 10-year-old Jacob Field, who was diagnosed with a brain tumor. The A's are Jacob's favorite team, and his family took him to Oakland to see his beloved A's play.

(I apologize if to the Times if I'm quoting too much here, but this story is amazing.)

The A's, hearing about Jacob, had responded with an immediate invite, catcher Jason Kendall even paying for a chartered plane to return the family to L.A.

When Jake was taken to the field, the A's came by, one by one, to introduce themselves, Mark Kotsay, Jay Payton and Eric Chavez each giving the youngster a bat to take home.

"We were even treated to a show by Rich Harden who was playing with his Samurai sword [in the clubhouse]," Jorge, an L.A. Homeland Security supervisor, wrote before delivering the punch line. "Jason said Harden's roommates told him he is not allowed to take the sword home."

Kendall put the family in a suite for the game, "and Jake had his nachos and some cotton candy," Jorge wrote. "Jake lasted about half the game before he got really tired, but in the suite he was able to lie on the couch. ... This was an experience neither Jake nor the rest of us will ever forget."

Jacob's brother, Nick, who plays football at West Covina High, told the Whittier Daily News the trip "was the best day of my life because Jacob was happy."


[On Friday -- less than two weeks after shaking hands with each of the A's --Jacob died.]