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How about those A's?


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With their 6th win in a row Sunday, the A's are tied for the AL Wild Card spot, and sit in striking distance of the Angels for the AL West title.


I don't know if they can hold on or not, I'm not into predictions too much.



But they won the division in 2000. Of course, that had to be a fluke, because you really can't compete without a large payroll.


Then they won 102 games in 2001, and made the playoffs again. Well, I guess they got lucky, and now they can't afford to keep Giambi, so we'll see how the small market hurts them


Well, 2002 and they won 103 games. Another division title... boy, this payroll argument is really taking a beating, isn't it?


2003- another division title. This is getting a little tedious, isn't it? Of course, they can't keep Tejada, so they'll be right back in the tank.


2004- another 90+ win season, falling 1 game short of the playoffs. It's a shame that they can't compete at all with the bigger market teams. They'd better make 2005 their year, because their big 3 pitchers are going to start leaving...


So of course, they trade Mulder, they trade Hudson, and here they are, back again. And with the Harden, Haren and Blanton nucleus so young... who's to say they won't continue?


But seriously, you can't compete without a big payroll.

And did I forget to mention that the team they've tied for the Wild Card is the free spending Minnesota Twins, who have won 3 straight division titles of their own?



Is it at all possible that you DON'T need a large payroll to consistently compete?


Of course, after all their early struggles, the Yankees might get it together, win the wild card, and then everyone can go back to talking about payroll again.

Edited by LegFuJohnson
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Good post. They have been nothing short of amazing. I think we had a discussion after they got rid of their two pitchers. They've proven they can have successful seasons with a limited payroll. That point has been made (along with Minnesota, which was supposed to be contracted for crying out loud :D ). Of course you and all A's fans want the ultimate prize, a World Series title. Do you think they can accomplish that goal with their formula for letting stars go? Winning divisions is all fine and good, but ask the Braves if that is enough. I wonder what the A's could accomplish if they sometimes kept their stars. Two or three world series titles would certainly outweigh proving that you can have some success on a limited budget, no?

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Of course you want the big prize. But anything can happen in the playoffs. I think it's a bigger fluke that they haven't won one yet. Of course, if Jeremy Giambi slides (whatever year that was)...

and they simply ran themselves out that Boston series (2003?).


Get to the playoffs and roll the dice. The Braves had plenty of stars, and they only won once, so that doesn't guarantee anything either.



For the record, I'm not an A's fan. I root for the Evil Empire. But I'm a bigger baseball fan than Yankee fan (if that makes sense). And since I find myself defending the high payroll (see 100 page thread below), and baseball's supposed competitive imbalance problem, every once in awhile people need to be reminded.


Although, maybe there is a competitive imbalance problem. The A's have been too good for too long. Better come up with some way to fix that.

Edited by LegFuJohnson
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