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Are The Oakland Athletics Overrated?


On Twitter today Yahoo: Sports Talk Live asked this question on Twitter about the 2013  Oakland Athletics.

Are the A’s actually overrated, feasting off the AL’s bottom-feeders? Tweet us your thoughts and we’ll debate at 5pm on @YSTL! #YSTL

— Y! SportsTalk Live (@YSTL) June 17, 2013

With a 42-29 record the A’s are on top of the American League West division. At home their record is 22-12 and on the road 20-17. Now it becomes what constitutes a bottom feeder in the American League? Also, should a team be considered overrated for beating teams its supposed to?

It was given that the Houston Astros were going to struggle this year and Oakland has taken advantage going 9-0 so far.

Yet when the season began the Los Angeles Angels weren’t viewed as a bottom feeder and at this point with a 30-39 record it’s rather shocking especially with the acquisitions of Josh HamiltonTommy Hanson and Jason Vargas. Oakland has capitalized on their struggles have gone 5-1 so far in 2013 against the Angels.

The Texas Rangers are a team that the A’s haven’t seen all that much and that changes with this four game series that starts tonight and have a 3-3 record.

For whatever reason the Seattle Mariners have been a problem for Oakland and just this past weekend nearly came up with a sweep. It’s the only team in their division to have a winning record against the A’s.

When it comes to other AL teams the Athletics took advantage of struggling teams such as the Chicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals, yet the two teams that got hot the Tampa Bay Rays and Cleveland Indians swept a three and four game series from the A’s. Interestingly enough the Boston Red Sox got outscored 24-15 and still managed to win two games of that three game series.  Besides the sweeps by the Indians and Rays their worst performance came against the Baltimore Orioles in a four game series after being outscored 28-14.

Of the teams the A’s have played only the Astros and White Sox would be considered bottom feeders. Also, During interleague play Oakland is 5-2.

An argument that supports the claim of the A’s being overrated is that against teams under .500 the A’s are 28-10 and against teams over .500 14-19.

Still it ignores that Brett Anderson struggled and has since gone to the 60-day disabled list after suffering a stress fracture in his foot, Jarrod Parker and Dan Straily both started the season out horribly, Yoenis CespedesJosh Reddick, Chris Young and Coco Crisp each have spent time on the dl. Jed Lowrie missed a couple of games due to an injury and Josh Donaldson missed a game recently as well.

Young and Reddick have had miserable seasons at the plate, Cespedes had his struggles before getting hot the past couple of weeks, Brandon Moss and Seth Smith have gone cold, Eric Sogard has done a solid job at second base when facing right-handed pitching and Adam Rosales hasn’t provided much when in the lineup against left-handed pitching.

If anything the A’s are far from overrated and become that much better when Reddick and Moss get their bats going.

 

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Robert D. Cobb
Founder, Publisher and CEO of INSCMagazine. Works have appeared and featured in places such as Forbes, Huffington Post, ESPN and NBC Sports to name a few. Follow me on Twitter at @RobCobb_INSC, email me at [email protected]

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