Frank Thomas' Return to the Oakland A's Lineup Will Help Jack Cust

Steven ResnickSenior Writer IAugust 2, 2008

Now that Frank Thomas is back in the lineup, look for Jack Cust's average to increase to around .250 when the season is over.

He's going to get more pitches to hit, because Thomas is still a dangerous hitter and pitchers are going to pitch around him.

Cust put on a great at-bat against Hideki Okajima. He battled him and got a ball to hit. Cust took it to the opposite field and out of the ballpark.

Technically, it was almost called a triple, but the umpires made the correct call that it was a home run. I think Cust will hit at least 10 more home runs for a total of 30 on the season, which means he'll be back next year for the A's.

As manager Bob Geren said that they aren't going to mess with Cust's swing, I think he's going to get advice from Frank Thomas now that he's back in the lineup. That will benefit Cust tremendously.

The problem for Cust is that for most of the season, he had no help power-wise. When you double up the next closest guy to you on home runs, you know the team isn't scoring very well.

So look for Cust to go on a hot streak. I still think the A's can have a winning season, but their offense really needs to get in gear for that to happen.