Postgame quick hits: An absent offense

Jack Cust’s struggles were mentioned in my previous post, but he’s not the only one battling at the plate right now, as evidenced by tonight’s three-hit showing against Minnesota’s Brian Duensing. Cust’s troubles just happen to stand out more because of his lack of run-scoring production, not to mention 28 strikeouts over his last 16 games. He’s obviously in a funk, but here’s a look at some other slumping players:

  • Cust may be streaky, but Kevin Kouzmanoff may be even streakier. He’s hitting just .136 (6-for-44) in August, which follows a combined .306 mark in June and July after hitting .244 in April and May.
  • Kurt Suzuki is hitting .192 (10-for-52) over his last 14 games after going 17-for-42 over his previous 11 contests. Overall, his season average is down to .255 — not exactly what the A’s are looking to get out of their catcher. He also hasn’t hit a home run since July 28, and Oakland as a team is currently in a six-game homerless stretch.
  • Mark Ellis, aside from his three-double day Thursday, has also been racking up outs lately. He’s batting .219 over his last 21 games but has still managed to maintain a .270 season average. Needless to say, his production’s been average this year, but you can’t discount his value to the team given his defensive ways — he’s committed just one error at second base all year.
  • Chris Carter came up empty again tonight, and he’s now 0-for-16 with seven strikeouts in his first five games. He really just needs one hit, I think, to get into a groove of sorts. In order to do that, though, he’s got to lay off those sliders, which aren’t exactly making him look good up there.

The good news? Tomorrow is a day game, and we all know how much the A’s like the sun. They’ve won 11 of their past 12 day games and are a Major League-best 28-11 (.718) during the day. 


Well, another season of injuries and poor offense is coming to a close and I stand by my thoughts during the preseason… fire the training staff!!! As far as mistakes the A’s made… Keeping Cust out of the line-up, banking on Chavez to stay healthy, sticking with Barton at 1B, signing Crisp and Sheets to big contracts, daily sending out an outfield with the power of a pee wee league… Now for what they did right: ummmm… uhhh… Gio and Trevor, Kous, Bringing Cust back… hmm… we need some offense. The season is lost but showed us that we have the potential to put out a pitching staff right up there with what we had during the years of the “Big Three” or even the days of Stewert, Welch, Moore, Davis and Young… most likely even better. We need a BIG BAT at 1B, 2 in the outfield and maybe a 2nd Baseman. So, Trade away Barton, sign a big bat to the outfield and be prepared for a back-up plan at 1B. Starters should be set….heck, sign the whole rotation for 4/5 years!!!

I can’t believe how little credit Barton gets. He’s SUPERB on defense, and will likely get better. He’s a natural doubles hitter, and the team’s most consistent hitter. His power is limited, but it’s there. I’d hate to see him traded, when he could make a Chavez-like run of Gold Gloves.

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