Posted By Jeff Fletcher on March 6, 2009 11:01 am
Catchy headline, especially considering we’re talking about the A’s? Anyway, the A’s made it official this morning by announcing the signings of Orlando Cabrera and Nomar Garciaparra.
Susan Slusser writes in her sfgate blog that Bobby Crosby met with the A’s brass this morning to discuss his new role. She noted that later on Crosby and Cabrera were taking ground balls, side by side. That must have been a sight.
It’s going to be a fascinating thing to watch how all of this unfolds. Crosby has said that he’s not going to be content as a backup infielder. (Gotta admire his honesty.) He’s also said he’s never played second base. Ever. So how effective of a backup middle infielder could he be anyway?
With two new infielders showing up on the same day, that sends quite a ripple down the roster, beyond simply the impact on Crosby. It was all laid out pretty well here.
The A’s aren’t likely to keep more than six infielders, and we have to count Jason Giambi as one of them. With Eric Chavez, Mark Ellis, Garciaparra and Cabrera, that leaves one backup spot, and it’s got to be a middle infielder (unless the A’s want Nomar to be their backup shortstop and second baseman). If Crosby’s around, he’s the guy. But that means no Jack Hannahan, no Cliff Pennington, no Gregorio Petit.
And no Daric Barton.
That’s a pretty big step back for a guy who one A’s official told me last spring was a lock to be top five in the rookie of the year voting.
Bear in mind that none of this is set in stone. The A’s could squeeze out a seventh infeld spot if they decide to go with just four outfielders (Matt Holliday, Ryan Sweeney, Jack Cust, Travis Buck and no Rajai Davis) or with only six relief pitchers. I think the latter is unlikely because they have such a young pitching staff.
However it shakes out, it will be interesting to watch.