July 21, 2007

Amber Alert: The 2007 A's Offense Is Missing

Tonight should have been a fun night at the ballpark. The A's were in the 4th game of a six-game homestand, coming off a 6-0 shutout win, followed by a day off, and the weather couldn't have been much better. But instead of the glee felt following a victory, we were once again let down by the team's completely inept offense, which had some in the stands murmuring over the possibility of a no-hitter. While history was not made, another nail in the coffin for the 2007 season was solidly hammered in place.

Seemingly by the time Kristine and I had made it to our seats, the A's were already down 1-0 in the first inning, courtesy of the aggressive Orioles hitters. While Baltimore went on to score in four of the first five innings, the A's hitters continued their cold spell, with the first 16 outs being recorded without an A's player reaching base by way of a hit. And when Mark Ellis clubbed a home run over the left field wall to close the gap somewhat, we were almost dismayed, knowing the A's didn't really stand much chance of competing, any more than they had in the just-concluded nine game losing streak.

As has been well documented, this is not an A's offense capable of taking advantage of opportunities. That the first place Angels had already lost their game had no impact on the moribund squad, missing many regulars due to injuries, and seeing Nick Swisher injure his shoulder midway through the contest, thanks to a fielding mishap.

When the painful three hours were over, the A's were again on the losing end, this time by a 6-1 margin. Though the score may change from day to day, the themes are all too familiar. Strikeouts. Popups. Double plays. And an apparent lack of urgency from the team's regulars, who look like they've already said goodbye to the 2007 pennant race.

I've already started booing some of the A's regulars when they come to the plate. I fear that with time, my "to boo" list will increase, unless massive changes start very soon. I won't be holding my breath.

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