Yoenis Cespedes agreed to a four year deal to play for the Oakland Athletics, making the once destitute A's lineup look somewhat threatening again. General Manager Billy Beane swooped in at the eleventh hour to sign the Cuban star before he was to return to the Dominican Republic after the Miami Marlins offered their pitch.
What was once a team that was projected to finish dead last in the AL West, no, make that Major League Baseball, has just possibly boosted their potential wins total by signing the slugger. No one expected the team, whose offseason philosophy looked like a fire sale, to even post a figure for Cespedes.
This begs the question: Was Beane quietly plotting to grab the Cuban slugger by getting rid of outstanding contracts? Did he just make the sportswriters look like a bunch of idiots?
It's happened before (2002), Beane not only shocked the baseball world by going 103-59, complete with a 20 game win streak using nothing but a Triple-A lineup and a young, but effective rotation, he did it without his two best hitters and his best reliever.
Fast forward to now. Oakland has lost top hitter Josh Willingham to Minnesota, top pitchers Trevor Cahill and Gio Gonzalez to Arizona and Washington, respectively, and closer Andrew Bailey to Boston. Although they have acquired several top prospects as compensation, the team still looks like it will be in the cellar.
Cespedes is finished with his tour of Miami and is about to go back to the Dominican Republic when Billy Beane makes him an offer he can't refuse. Cespedes signs, the A's now have the top international slugger, end of story.
Let's all be honest here, Beane made the sportswriters look stupid again. By trading away all their major league talent for prospects, it looked like there was going to be another Triple-A season for