Yeah I know we’re not supposed to get excited about a game when the calendar reminds us that we’re not even to St. Patrick’s Day yet, but doggone, if today’s showing is a portent of things to come…well, let’s just say there’s reason to be excited about the 2011 season.
And while it’s way too early to tell what it all means as far as playoff aspirations to go, I think it’s safe to say that the A’s won’t bore us to tears as was the case far too often the last couple of seasons. Translation: there’s life in the A’s lineup, which must be music to the ears of the likes of Trevor Cahill.
The 23-year old righthander threw four innings today in his latest quest to impress manager Bob Geren enough to land an April Fool’s Day start. Cahill struck out five- including the first two batters he faced- but was also touched for three runs on six hits. He walked two.
As a nice twist, the A’s pitching wasn’t the story today. Using what more than likely will be their Opening Day lineup, the offense started fast with three runs in the first, then used three long balls to score their remaining six runs: a solo shot by Hideki Matsui (2-for-2, 2 walks, 2 runs) in the third, a two-run blast by Daric Barton (2-for-4, 2 runs, 3 RBI’s) in the fourth, and a three-run tater by Cliff Pennington in the fifth. That put the A’s ahead 9-3, before they called off the dogs.
Today’s star performance goes to Coco Crisp. Crisp started things off in the opening inning with a base hit- and scored from first on a single by Barton to give the A’s a lead they’d never relinquish. Crisp went 3-for-4, ballooning his Spring average to .519.