By Jason Wojciechowski on February 21, 2012 at 8:35 PM
As of the last post here, Manny Ramirez had not yet signed, so expect to see quite a bit of Manny here.
Bob Melvin says the A's will take their time identifying their closer. Sorry, fantasy players.
Jared Feldman sees the A's as a team worth watching. There are some dubious assertions in there, including that Cespedes's "spring will certainly determine if the A's made the right gamble" and that Jonny Gomes is vying for time at first base. Consider the source, I guess.
This is a pretty decent Ray Ratto piece on Sean Doolittle. It's kind of an archetypal spring training article, but Ratto folds that notion into the story itself, so I think it works.
Bob Melvin likes having one closer. Of course, the yapping about Bob Geren's "lack of a system" is still going on, and it's still bullshit. Brian Fuentes blew the games and he needs to own it 100%. No "I was uncomfortable, but in the end it's on me" or "I blew the games, but I wasn't really prepared like I like to be." It's not like Fuentes blew games in the seventh inning, which is earlier than he expects to pitch as the closer. He was blowing extra-inning games when he was called on in a tie. Does he only start paying attention when the A's take a lead?
Ugh. I'm mad all over again. Just go away.
The backup catcher spot will be chosen solely on catching ability, not versatility, so Josh Donaldson won't get any extra help from being a third baseman and occasional outfielder. Also, being an outfielder on the A's is probably a hindrance, not a help. More importantly, Landon Powell looks to be the front-runner for the backup catcher spot, which is interesting. The A's are already one man over the 40-man roster limit when you factor in Yoenis Cespedes, so adding Powell means two guys will have to go. With Donaldson being 26, I wonder whether he might be sent off if he can't beat Powell for the big-league job.
It's always interesting to see which players still use interpreters and which don't, and apparently Bartolo Colon prefers Spanish after sixteen years playing ball in the United States.
Also, Max Stassi lost 13 pounds.
Bay Area Sports guy has some excellent suggestions for how the A's might sell more tickets. Jose Canseco is prominently involved.
I don't agree with Nico that the Mariners got ripped off for Michael Pineda, particularly because the A's did not get "a haul" for Trevor Cahill -- they got a good pitcher plus some pieces. The Mariners, meanwhile, got one of the very best prospects in the game, even accounting for position. Nobody's though Montero would stay at catcher for years, yet the ratings have been high all along. The bat, say the prospect-hounds, is legitimately special.
C. Trent Rosecrans has a fun list of A's retread hitters. Mike Stanley really hit in Oakland, didn't he?
John Shea wonders in one of his bullets why the A's never signed Barry Bonds. I've wondered this myself.
Richard Justice thinks Manny could've been one of the all-time greats. What he completely fails to recognize is that Manny is one of the all-time greats. Am I going to have to read this nonsense all goddamn year from these people? Suddenly I don't want him on the A's anymore.