Casey Pratt, Comcast Sports Net’s A’s insider joined Jason to talk about the Oakland Athletics. Casey was recently named Comcast Sports Net California’s A’s insider, and talked about jumping into the job just in time for Oakland’s series with their regional rival San Francisco Giants. Casey said he’ll provide a beat writer service, but also do exclusive web content that is more geared toward fun.
Jason asked for Casey’s evaluation of the A’s through the first quarter of the season. He said that the A’s looked to be punting this season by trading Andrew Bailey, Trevor Cahill and Gio Gonzalez in the offseason. However, Casey said that they got guys in return that are producing right away in Ryan Cook, Jarrod Parker, Tommy Milone and Josh Reddick. With all of the offseason trades, Casey said it is a surprise that the A’s are currently one game over the .500 mark.
Casey said that the A’s will get better as they have some players return from injury, and Manny Ramirez from suspension. The A’s lineup will feature Yoenis Cespedes, Coco Crisp, Manny Ramirez and Brandon Inge once the team is intact and healthy. Casey called that one of the most potent lineups the Athletics have seen in a long time. He discussed how Yoenis Cespedes is the first player in Oakland since Frank Thomas in 2006 that is a must-watch guy when he’s at the plate. Cespedes’s hand is injured and he isn’t swinging a bat yet, but an MRI showed no major structural damage. For Manny Ramirez, the A’s made it clear that Ramirez must perform well to stay with the team. Ramirez helped out immediately though by taking Yoenis Cespedes under his wing and helping out with his swing.
Next, Jason and Casey talked about the Giants and A’s series coming up on Friday, Saturday and Sunday at AT&T Park. Casey said that for the players, this is just another series. However, the players know what the series means to the fan base, and want to reward the fan base with bragging rights.
Finally they talked about the future of the team in Oakland. Casey said that Victory Court in Jack London Square in Downtown Oakland would be a good place to revitalize the city. Casey also said that there’s no family atmosphere at A’s games, and going to Jack London Square would help that.