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A Challenging Decade For Bay Area Sports

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First of all, I'm sure this has been mentioned on the site this week, but I thought it was worth highlighting on the front page. it is really refreshing to read something other than negative comments about the city of Oakland. Besides having the second coolest name in the Indians outfield circa 2002, Coco Crisp sounds very genuine with his comments here:

"I'm excited," Crisp told reporters in a conference call. "I have a lot of family in Oakland. I'm an Oakland Raider fan, too. So I'm excited and would love to help the team move up in the division and hopefully win the division. That would be nice."

Also, be sure to check out the nicely put together Fan Post highlighting the A's prospect lists from Kevin Goldstein and John Sickels.

In slightly more depressing news, Scott Ostler put together this piece, aptly titled "Still can't believe he didn't slide", as if A's fans needed any more reminders of that particular Gatorade moment.

Don't take it too hard, Bay Area sports fans. Anyone can have a bad-hair decade.

Major team championships were scarce (as in zero) in the '00s. The struggles were mighty, the frustrations profound. But we've still got 90 years to get this century on track.

There's no point wallowing in self-pity and negativism as we blast into a new decade. But on reflection, what grade would you give Bay Area sports for the 2000s?

On this judge's report card: C-minus.

Why sugar-coat or over-complicate a decade that can be summed up in three words: "Slide, Jeremy, slide!"


Somehow when you see it all laid out like this, it doesn't look all that good for Bay Area Sports. The four major sports in the Bay Area had a combined total of zero championships in the decade. The Warriors had their moment in the sun--one out of ten years--the 49ers did not; the Raiders landed a SuperBowl appearance, the Giants came so close and yet so far (and then there was the Bonds scandal), the Sharks...and finally the A's.

The A's and general manager Billy Beane gave us "Moneyball," the brilliantly innovative approach to baseball. They gave us five trips to the playoffs, two MVPs and a Cy Young. But in the end they were playing no-money-ball.

Now here is the question: Is that really a failure? The A's were competitive more often than not throughout the decade. The turned out some incredible baseball teams; some elite pitchers, made it to the playoffs five times, landed multiple Rookie of the Years, two MVPs and a Cy Young. That's bad?

I know some will disagree, but I would rather field a competitive team year after year than have one fluke season where the team won it all; sandwiched in-between long stretches of losing seasons.

How would you rank the A's overall in the last decade? (And care to rank any other of the Bay Area teams?) Is winning it all really the only measure of a successful team?