The A’s offense got a much-needed lift today with the return of Milton Bradley to the lineup. It is a testament to Bradley’s skill that he was inserted without any delay into the cleanup slot, and he delivered.
But he wasn’t the only one. Every single player except Chavez got a hit today (and he was robbed of one), and three of them had multiple hits.
Dan Johnson continues to rack up the numbers, this time out of the DH slot, which lets Nick Swisher play first base. I think Swisher is easily the best first baseman we have, but it has not always worked to play him there. But no matter where he is playing (and right now, I don’t care if he catches!), Swisher is at the top of his offensive game. Pushing his average up and over .300 today with a couple of hits, Swisher continues to absolutely rake left-handed pitchers.
Bobby Crosby continues to surprise me, with the adjustments he’s made to his swing, and his numbers are climbing up to more than respectable levels for our defensive shortstop. A few good weeks do not erase a few years of bad, but it’s a start.
And speaking of maligned hitters, even Jason Kendall got into the act today, with two hits and an RBI. He’s still not batting his weight, but today he was everything you expect from a lifetime .300 hitter.
According to Geren, Ellis was kept out of today’s game with a ‘swollen knee’, but Marco did a perfect Ellis impression; a hit, a sacrifice bunt, and solid (if not as pretty) defense.
Danny <sigh> Haren. What can we say?
Haren continues to battle Peavy for the lowest ERA in the major leagues, and he helped his cause today, allowing a single run over eight innings. His ERA is sitting at an absolutely ridiculous 1.64, two full months into the season.
Kiko Calero made the A’s 6-1 lead seem insurmountable in the ninth inning, which I consider an accomplishment, considering his pitching of late. Can we have more games like this one, please?
On another bright note, May is officially OVER for the Athletics, and if a hot summer streak is going to take place this year, it won’t be a big mystery as to why. The A’s hopefully will see players come off the DL one by one, until their real team is put back together. We got a preview of how that works today. I consider it an absolute miracle to be at the .500 mark, and I hope we have nowhere to go but up.
Memo to the A’s: Stay healthy, keep hitting, keep watching Haren and Gaudin play the ‘How Low Can We Go’ game, and root, root, root for the Angels to lose.
The A’s take on the Twins at 7:05 on Friday night, after a nice day off at home to rest.