Oakland Athletics: Compelling Reason To Remain a Fan
The Oakland Athletics are in the midst of a disaster. With that in mind, the pertinent question is, “Why stay an A’s Fan?”
The so-called re-tooling was mired by injury and low performance for the Oakland Athletics. The biggest stars like Sonny Gray are scuffling, and things got so bad that Billy Butler and Danny Valencia are tussling in the clubhouse.
This isn’t the Swingin’ A’s of the 1970s, where Billy North and Reggie Jackson beat each other up (and Ray Fosse too) in Tiger Stadium. That team won a world championship. This team remains at around 17 games under .500. That’s worse than their record at the All-Star break (13 games under .500).
The A’s are dwindling down a losing path, and they may end up with a record that rivals their terrible season last year.
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So why stay an A’s fan? Why, after three championship caliber years, shouldn’t A’s fans feel betrayed by their management?
To be fair, A’s fans have indeed been betrayed. David Forst and Lew Wolff tried to convince fans that they were competing this year, but it wasn’t about the competition. It was more about how they care about A’s fans’ money going straight to their heretofore untouched rainy day fund.
Clearly, they haven’t touched their extra funds since the A’s are more interested in dumping good players like Josh Reddick, Rich Hill, and Chris Coghlan.
But A’s fans, here’s the reason to remain an A’s fan:
The A’s are preparing for a dynasty. Franklin Barreto is still an Athletic, and he compares well to Addison Russell who may be a Gold Glove shortstop for the Chicago Cubs. He’s also still 20 years old.
The A’s got three right-handed pitchers in the trade with the Dodgers who could bolster their pitching staff in the next few years – Jharel Cotton, Grant Holmes, and Frankie Montas. These guys are hard-throwing cats, and Holmes and Montas could join the bullpen as soon as September.
The A’s have dipped into the international signing pool as well with 17-year old outfielder Lazaro “Lazarito” Armenteros. They have also added two young not-well-known Dominican shortstops in Yerdeluis Vargas and Marcos Brito.
But if you add this talent mentioned above to recent callups like Ryon Healy and Daniel Mengden, you may see that the A’s are poised for a strong rookie class for the next few years.
Sean Manaea has flashes of excellence. And though Bruce Maxwell, J. B. Wendelken, Max Muncy, and Chad Pinder have all been underperforming, don’t forget that Walt Weiss had a horrid first year as an Athletic.
Next: More Fallout From The Reddick Trade
The A’s are on the right track, even if it’s not this year. Besides, Khris Davis is smashing home runs. What else could fans want?