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Open Thread: Game 48 - A's at Baltimore

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Well, here we are, precisely 29.0123% of the way through the season, the traditional point in the schedule where we tear our hair out over the offensive futility of our catcher and then pick all our hair up off the floor and either donate it to Pantene or knit it into a mourning veil for the players on the DL.

I have to agree with baseballgirl's agreement with me from last night: the A's are our favorite team. No, wait. Oh, right: Dan Haren is not only the single most valuable player on the A's roster right now, but also likely the key to the A's post-season chances this season. We can only hope that "Baghdad-by-the-Bay Bob" (ask FreeSeatUpgrade for an explanation of that one) was being truthful in his assertion that Haren was lifted after 7 innings and 91 pitches last night because of a mystical, peyote-fueled prophecy manifesting itself through uncomprehending human instruments, and not because of any physical problems. With Haren, that is.

Meanwhile, tonight the A's try to push closer to escaping their season-long standard deviation, with Joe Kennedy opposing the Orioles' Dallas Braden Brian Burres.

To the utter shock of absolutely no one, Chavez is out of the lineup again tonight. However, inspired perhaps by the very same hallucinogenic transformative vision that spurred Geren to pull Haren last night, Travis Buck returns to that field to the, uh, right, of that field that we're, uh, not supposed to name.

And thank Ba'al, Kendall is back in the 9 slot again.

A's

Stewart LF
Swisher CF
Johnson 1B
Cust DH
Crosby SS
Chavez 3B
Ellis 2B
Buck RF
Kendall C

Baltimore

Roberts 2B
Gomez 1B
Markakis CF
Tejada SS
Millar DH
Mora 3B
Hernandez C
Patterson CF
Payton LF

And a half-assed stab at the first stanza of a derisive Poetic Interlude after the jump ... to be finished post-game.

LATE UPDATE: Chavez in at third base after all. If he's gonna be in, I like seeing him lower in the lineup.

The Loathsome Bat of Jason Kendall

(Original lyrics here.)

William Triggerfinger traded for Jason Kendall
With a phone that he twirled around his diamond ring finger.
At a Baltimore baseball society gath'rin',
Outfielders were called in and his offense took from him
As they played him in shallowly near to the infield.
AN bitched, "William Triggerfinger -- no effin'-A trader."
But you who philosophize disgrace and criticize all trades,
Take the rag away from your face.
Now ain't the time for tirades.