A’s sign Bobby Hill look-alike to 3 year deal.

big country I wasn’t exactly thrilled nor agitated when I heard about the Athletics signing free agent Billy Butler to a 3 year, 30 million dollar deal. He was fun to watch when the Royals made their run to the World Series, yet in the end he is nothing more than one of those charismatic players that fair-weather fans clamor for (that shtick may work in KC, but not in Oakland–where you must produce) but really doesn’t add much to your team. Obviously the Athletics are hoping that he returns to his 2012 form when he hit 29 dingers with 107 RBI’s.

Butler’s stats last season were unacceptable for someone who plays DH/1B with only 9 HR’s. I’m not sure where the Bill James disciples stand on the issue, but I stand firm on my belief that the hot corners should have a little bit of pop. (he has–in James’ terminology– “old player skills,” which means someone who hits for average, is slow and not overly dependent on the home run.) As readers of this blog may or may not know, I am NOT a big fan of plodding players that clog the bases, essentially making them worthless base-runners unless they get on with no outs–the Bobby Hill look-alike also grounds into a lot of double plays leading the league twice.

In the end, the Oakland ball-club is paying a player that may have had his best days behind him the highest that he’s EVER going to be payed. It’s a classic case of giving a player his money for stats that haven’t been produced for your team and that may never be re-produced. Let the fans have fun and kick the tires on their new car for a while, yet I see no reason to get over-stimulated. (my cup of coffee did that quite well) This is nothing more than change for the sake of change…or perhaps owner Lew Wolff wants to pacify the fans who think of him as Satan by “giving a dog a bone.”

11 Comments

Who’s the left handed DH out there? Maybe a platoon of the DH position?
v

I thought Brandon Moss was our left handed DH. I can’t see him playing a ton of games in the outfield. I guess we’ll see where this leads, my guess is that it leads to (LIKE ALWAYS) a bunch of platooning based on L/R matchups and John Jaso’s ticket out of town.

wishes for this year: getting rid of Punto, Callaspo, and Cook. The coming of Nate Freiman as another clutch bat. The monster Georgia Boy tag-team of Moss and Reddick, destroying ball covers and talking enough shit to rattle the opposition. Last, Doolittle (aka King Sean), Otero, and Abad being the nails in the coffin for the last three innings. Butler can add to the mix, or kicked down to wherever the fuck the Rivercats are playing now.

Great post, Andres. Can’t say I disagree with any of it…although I’m a bit confused about where Moss will play now.
By the way….the new AAA team is the Nashville Sounds with the River Cats being the Giants farmclub. I know—it’s shitty.

Congratulations, you guys can have him. Ha.

thanks for the words of encouragement! 🙂

Im open to being surprised about 3 years of ‘happy’ with Butler. But my first thought is “what about Moss, Freiman and …?”

I’m not so much worried about Freiman, I never thought he was going to have a long or productive big league career, but Moss is definitely one of my favorite players on this team and it would hurt to give up one of the few power sources we have.

I’m a bit confused by this signing; a good, but not great hitter who will always fall short of his power potential that maybe is not potential at all. Do you think this is an ongoing attempt to replace Cespedes? or You made some very compelling arguments about Cespedes and his pathetic OB% and after a quick glance over August and September game scores it doesn’t seem like the Oakland offense totally disappeared. I always liked Billy Butler, but he never became what we all wanted him to be; that 2012 season you mentioned; year in and year out; not even close. I don’t understand how he only drove in 66 runs? I’d be interested to read a sabermetric analysis on his 2014 season.

It has nothing to do with Cespedes. The Oakland brass has him pegged as the permanent DH. We also had trouble hitting lefties and Butler apparently hits them well. My first thought is…”Ok, well if this guy gets on base it will take 2 hits just to bring him in.” A lot of people think he’s protection for Donaldson and Moss so I guess he IS a replacement for Cespedes in some twisted alt-universe kind of way!
I read an article somewhere about Butler’s 2014 season and the coaches telling him to hit more line drives to utilize the Royals speed and their huge park. Could be bullcrap, who knows?

Oakland scored 148 runs in April and it was downhill from there; 142,132,113,103, and 91 in September so I think you’re right Gary. Cespedes is not to blame. He’s just the fall out guy for an offense that needed a change. Maybe Butler will make the critical difference. I don’t have the metrics know how to really caste an opinion, but ya know I like that Oakland is not living in denial. They clearly had an offensive problem last year and they’re doing something about it.

The Brewer, on the other hand are all smug about it saying shit like we’re ready for the season to start tomorrow. Oh yeh? Adam Lind is the only addition to an offense that could not score runs. Ughhh.

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