Growing up, the Oakland A’s were my second favorite team. I still hold a small, nostalgic place in my heart for The Bash Brothers, Walt Weiss and Dennis Eckersley. Keep in mind, I was nine years old and had no idea Jose Canseco would turn out to be such an enormous turd burglar. I mimicked Weiss when playing shortstop in Adray and thought side arm was the only way to pitch if you wanted to dominate at the sand lot. Flash forward 24 years and we find an Oakland Athletics squad that is still a serious playoff contender (tied for Wildcard lead and 2.5 back of Texas for ALW), albeit built in quite a different way than those late 80′s juggernauts. Billy Beane has another somewhat overachieving group of players with solid pitching and few big names (“big” being an admittedly subjective term) outside of Yoenis Cespedes. Their uni’s are still awesome in my book, but that’s about all the love I have for them these days. Essentially, they are not on my radar other than as a team I’d rather have our Tigers face in the playoffs than the Red Sox or the Rays (though I ultimately think Detroit takes the series against all of those teams). So here we are, two minutes of your life that you’ll never get back later and more familiar with my childhood than you may care to be. Oh yeah, there’s a baseball game tonight. A.J. Griffin is their pitcher. He’s prone to the long ball (given up more than any other starting pitcher – 30). Their best hitter and someone many A’s fans argued should have started over Cabrera in the All Star game (BWAHAHAHAHA. HA. Oh man. Okay I’m done.) now has a BA under .300 (Josh Donaldson at .292) and fan favorite Josh Reddick just landed on the DL. The Tigers opponent counts on pitching and intangibles to win games. The Tigers crush balls. (And pretty much do everything else well too, outside of stealing bases and bunting). This should be another series win… which is why I’m fairly certain every game will be close.
Anibal is on the bump and the sun is putting a beating on The D. Here’s hoping the Tigers do the same to Dave Stewart… I mean A.J. Griffin. Oh and get ready for some leather to dance – Iglesias is back at short.
Line ‘em up, line ‘em up: