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Let’s go A’s

May 6, 2018

When we first moved to the Bay Area we decided to become fans of the Oakland Athletics, rather than the San Francisco Giants. There were several reasons for it:

  • Giants fans take themselves way too seriously. The Giants have been relatively good over the last 15 years (winning a couple of World Series and all), and as a result Giants fans seem to expect the team to do well and get all bent of out shape when they don’t. By contrast, the A’s have been lousy for quite awhile, so no one minds that much if they lose (and are always pleasantly surprised when they win).
  • A’s tickets are way cheaper than Giant’s tickets. That’s partly due to the relative track records of the teams and the relative quality of the stadiums (although the brutalism of the Coliseum does have a certain retro charm now), but I suspect it’s also due to the fact that San Francisco has a lot more money than Oakland. Cheap tickets made it easier to catch more games, and since we started going to games when our daughter was still young it didn’t make a lot of sense to pay more for tickets when she didn’t really care who was playing.
  • It’s more fun to root for the underdog. This one’s just a personal preference; your mileage may vary.

As our daughter has gotten older we’ve stuck with the A’s. They’re still not that good, but the tickets are still pretty cheap, and they’re still fun to root for. The hardest part is accepting that you can’t get too attached to any particular player, because if they start doing well the A’s will trade them away.

This weekend we caught our first A’s game of the season, motivated in part by a desire to catch a game while Matt Chapman is still with the team (he’s been doing great at 3rd, although he’s in a bit of a batting slump at the moment). Plus they were playing the Orioles, who are even worse than the A’s this year, so they had a decent chance of winning. Overall the game was fun. It was a defensive battle: we reached the end of the 9th inning still tied 0-0, with the A’s having only gotten 2 hits and the Oriole’s 5. Extra baseball for our baseball dollar.

The 10th and 11th remained scoreless (the Oriole’s starting pitcher lasted the full 9 innings, and their first reliever was similarly killing us). But in the bottom of the 12th Jed Lowrie got a single, followed by Khris Davis (so stereotypically) knocking in a walk-off home run. It’s frankly surprising Davis is still with the team; the A’s would usually have traded him at least a year or two ago now. The team management has made some rumblings about stopping the trading of all of their good players, so maybe it’s a sign of change. Or maybe they’re just waiting for the right offer (my personal bet).

Regardless, the game was a fun way to spend a Saturday evening outside in nice weather. And hey, we got Black Panther bobbleheads too!

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From → Fun

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