Lew Wolff: Now It Is Time To Step in! Make Some Changes to the A's

Steven ResnickSenior Writer IMay 24, 2009

LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 01:  Jake Peavy #44 of the San Diego Padres throws a pitch against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on May 1, 2009 in Los Angeles, California. The Dodgers defeated the Padres 1-0.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

Lew Wolff, owner of the Oakland A's, now is time to get off your ass and do something about the sorry state of the A's under the direction of manager Bob Geren. The A's are the worst team in baseball.

Record wise the A's might not have the worst record in baseball, but they have the worst team. At least the Washington Nationals play with heart and have players who can hit the ball.

If the Nationals had the pitching the A's did, the Nationals wouldn't be in last place in the National League East. They'd be in the running for at least second or third place.

The A's pitching has been their biggest strength this year. The A's do not give up very many extra-base hits. Their bullpen has been also a strength too, but it's the way the bullpen is used by Geren that has the bullpen somewhat in disarray.

Even when the offense shows up it's Geren putting in pitchers who do not belong in the game at the time. Tampa Bay overcame a 5-3 deficit thanks to Geren's decision to bring in AAron Bailey for the bottom of the ninth when Brad Ziegler should have been in the ball game.

The A's played uninspired in their first game back from their road trip losing 2-1 to the Arizona Diamondbacks.

In tonight's game the A's finally got their offense somewhat going hitting four home runs. One two run shot and the rest solo shots. This includes Jason Giambi's solo shot which was the 400th of his career.

It appeared at the time the A's were cruising with Edgar Gonzalez pitching five effective innings. Michael Wuertz worked himself out of a little jam.

Brad Ziegler was even more impressive with a three up and three down inning, but what made it so impressive was that he got three ground ball outs.

So why wasn't Ziegler allowed to pitch the eigth inning considering the fact that Geren states there's no designated closer for the A's. Ziegler threw just 12 pitches he could have gone out for the eighth inning which would have been away better choice than the man Geren put into the game.

Geren puts in one of the worst relievers in baseball considering the last 10 outings for Springer haven't been good. He's given up 17 hits and nine runs. Including the last two games where he hasn't recorded an out and has given up four hits and four runs.

Geren then puts in Andrew Bailey which is a smart choice but he couldn't fix the damage caused by the three straight hits given up by Springer and the A's 5-1 lead evaporated.

Geren then makes another questionable decision in the top of the 11th inning by replacing Craig Breslow who had been solid in his one and a third innings of work. He did give up a two hits, but he also struck out two.

Sergio Casilla then was put into the game and promptly gave up three runs and the Diamondbacks took an 8-5 lead going into he bottom of the inning.

The Diamondbacks had their closer Chad Qualls in the game. Qualls got the first out a grounder by Matt Holliday. Giambi was able to hit an infield single and Nomar Garciaparra followed with a bloop single into center field.

Adam Kennedy the A's most consistent hitter since he arrived on scene hit a double if it wasn't for Garciaparra tripping he would have scored to make the game 8-7, but instead Kennedy just got one RBI making the game 8-6.

The next batter up with runners on second and third was Ryan Sweeney who fell into a 0-2 count, but worked it to a 2-2 when he chopped a ball off homeplate for a rather high bounced to third basemen Mark Reynolds who was not able to throw out Sweeney making the score 8-7.

The A's had runners on first and third with Jack Hannahan up at the plate. Again another horrendous decision by Geren was too allow Hannahan the chance to hit. He is the A's worst hitter and he shouldn't even be on the major league roster.

Also, the Diamondbacks weren't going to throw to second in case Miguel Montero the Diamondbacks catcher overthrew second base which would have allowed Kennedy to score.

So, at the very least Sweeney should have been in motion, but he wasn't and it cost the A's because of instead of having Sweeney at second base too take out the second basemen too allow Kennedy the chance to score.

Hannahan got a pitch to his liking his problem was that he hit it directly at the Diamondbacks Shortstop Stephen Drew who flipped the ball to Ryan Roberts the second basement and a throw to first for the easy game ending double play.

So, another horrible decision by Geren comes back to bite the A's. Runners on first and third with one out and the chance to tie the ball game and keep the extra innings going.

What else is new another frustrating loss for the A's and their fans. It is time for Wolff too step in because general manager Billy Beane will not fire Bob Geren. Well, it's time for Wolff to force the issue at hand and have Beane fire him.

It's embarrassing too watch the A's play baseball. Especially when the A's have had some outstanding pitching performances specifically from Dallas Braden that get wasted because the A's offense can't score any runs.

The defeat down in Tampa Bay and now the one in Oakland are beyond pathetic. There are no words to describe how terrible this team is playing and it has one theme to it and that is Geren.

So, Wolff apparently according to Tim Kawakami who stated that Wolff wanted to see the A's win this year. Well, now it is your time Wolff to show that you meant business when you stated you wanted to see wins.

Have Geren fired and the A's will play much much better because they will finally have a manager or at least an interim manager who knows how to use a bullpen properly.

First it starts with designating a closer and using him in that spot. The second part to it is getting the order correct and that means never seeing Springer in the eighth or ninth inning of a ball game. Third when a pitcher has shown that they are struggling don't send them back out into the game too struggle some more, take them out of the ball game and put someone fresh in.

Besides the bullpen issues it's time for Wolff to open up his wallet and allow for Beane to bring in a third basemen who will be able to at least hit the ball and drive in runs. Chase Headley has supposedly been available via trade, but even though he seems like a good choice at least batting average wise, he's not what the A's need.

The A's need a proven hitter and a proven player. That is why if the Colorado Rockies are in rebuilding mode the A's should be going after Garrett Atkins. Imagine for the A's a reunion of Holliday and Atkins in the same lineup.

It worked for Colorado and it should work for Oakland.

Another interesting opportunity for the A's though is the need for a solid number one pitcher. Dallas Braden is a solid three starter.

He has proven in his last game that he needs to become better when he has a two strike count on a batter because there were two situations where he had two strikes on Tampa Bay hitters and both times he put the pitch in a place that he got hit hard with. 

Jake Peavy comes to mind. Although, it's not realistic maybe Wolff with his new stadium idea will finally open up his wallet even more. Peavy would be the ideal pitcher for the coliseum.

Peavy wants to stay on the west coast, which means there are four other teams that could go after Peavy. The Los Angeles Dodgers, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, San Francisco Giants, and a team with an outside chance the Seattle Mariners.

Although, each team would benefit from Peavy the A's would be the best choice for him. The expansive foul territory and for the Padres the A's have a ton of pitching prospects that they could choose from, and with that being said the A's have the best offer that any team could give the Padres and it keeps Peavy on the west coast.

If Wolff is serious about the A's winning well it's now time to prove that he meant business when he said that. Make some trades get rid of players like Hannahan and Springer, and most of all getting rid of Geren will make the A's a much better team.  

The A's still have a shot at the division. Even with their poor play, they are nine games out, and with the Rangers' pitching overachieving right now, the A's have an excellent chance of making up some ground on Texas.

The Angels, as well, are not playing their best baseball, and the opportunity for the A's to gain confidence and get on a winning streak to make up some games is going to close very soon if no changes are made.


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