Friday, November 17, 2006

Am I Pissed? Yeah, I'm Pissed

.... Nice going, Billy Beane. After letting fan favorite and unanimous choice-for-manager, third base coach Ron Washington, slip to a division rival, he either puts up the world's most lackluster pursuit of Frank Thomas or had already decided to let him walk. Either that or the Big Hurt, despite all his words about loving Oakland and wanting to come back however possible, is just like the rest of the greedy money-sniffers that constitute the participants in professional sports. Either way, the result is the same. He signed a two-year contract with the Toronto Blue Jays and booked out of Oakland after only one season. Adios, cleanup hitter, 39 HR/114 RBI. Adios, ace (Zito; 16 wins, 3.83 ERA).

Beane does this every offseason before pulling some crazy scheme out of his ass to save the ship, so as an A's fan I should be used to this, but it never ceases to feel like a gut punch. I was devastated when Hudson and Mulder went, and that worked out, but at the time, man, was I upset. The A's lost a popular coach, an ace, a cleanup hitter, a home, and a manager, and what have they gained? Bench coach Bob Geren, to nobody's surprise, is the latest dull white guy to be named skipper. Also, they get to have a name as ridiculous as that belonging to their SoCal rival, the LAAAAA, which I will continue to call them until I'd be a hypocrite if I did. If we're the Oakland A's of Fremont (''of Fremont" has to be included, but I'll kill myself if it's the Silicon Valley A's of Fremont) the acronym is the OAFs. Wheeeee. What exemplary civic planning.

The idea behind the stadium is that the A's will finally make enough money to retain their high-profile players, instead of letting the rest of MLB pick and choose as they like. It had better work out... oh yeah, and to put the bitter cherry on a really, really frustrating offseason sundae, they're seriously considering signing Barry "Steroid Head" Bonds to fill the vacancy left by Thomas.

I'll take all this moving/renaming/losing crap, but I can't root for Bonds in the green and gold. I just can't. He's a liar and a cheater and a despicable human being, unlike A-Rod, whose only crimes are excessive egomanism and lack of good sense and/or "clutch" hitting. Bonds really is a grade-A asshole. And it's one of the cases when the name on the front of the uniform would not take precedence over the one on the back.

We've already made ourselves laughingstocks for the LAAAA fans, who you can bet will be giving back every drop of grief they received from A's Nation over their name; why not make ourselves universally unpopular and sign the most hated player in MLB? Go for the full monty. Get booed relentlessly on the road and be sniggered at as the team dumb enough to take on Bonds' traveling circus and chemically enhanced skills. You go right ahead and do that, A's management, but remember, you exist in a different stratosphere from the fans, who pay for merchandise and ticketing and keep fattening your pockets, which are still apparently too small to shell out enough to keep Frank Thomas in Oakland.

As a totally unrelated note, Danny Haren is getting married today. Congrats, boy. Let's see if it'll work out for you. Long-distance relationships can be hard.

One very bitter A's fan signing out.

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