Bright future for young rotation

Our starting rotation has been pitching really well lately, and it’s pretty amazing how young they are. It’s hard for me to imagine, especially at 21.

I was 24 when I got to the big leagues, and all five of these guys — Trevor Cahill and Brett Anderson are 21, Vin Mazzaro is 22, Josh Outman is 24, and Dallas Braden is 25 — got to the big leagues before they were that old.

And as solid as they’ve been, they’re only going to get better, because you can see that the talent is there. Consistency is probably the next thing for them, but they’ve been impressive so far and they’ve got a bright future.

The thing for them is going to consistently figure out how to go out there every day and prepare to perform and know what it takes to go out there and get the job done every five days, to find that routine between starts that allows them to go out there and feel confident.

Maybe you’re not going to have your best stuff every time, so for them to find ways to get outs when they don’t have their best stuff, things like that are going to be important. I know that for me, once I found a routine and started going out there with the proper mind-set, I found that consistency.

It’s tough for position players to help a starting pitcher because we’re not around them a whole lot when they’re doing their work, but it can be done to a certain extent, especially the guys who are on the infield, like Jason Giambi. He can go out there when maybe they’re losing their command a little bit or maybe look like they’re trying a little bit too hard. It’s easier for an infielder to say something, but we can all kind of make sure they’re putting in their time and doing the things they need to do. That’s part of being a veteran, and if I can help, I will.

The best way I can help them is to produce where I can. I’d like to provide that for all of our pitchers, especially early in the game because that might allow them to relax a little bit and let them settle in and get them through another two or three innings. it’s important to score runs for young pitchers to give them a little breathing room.

The future’s really bright for these guys. You look at them, and they’re all a little bit different in their styles, which is good. Three of them are left-handed, but there’s a variety there in how they do what they do, and it’s a nice mixture — two righties and three lefties, all with high-end talent.

It should be fun to watch.

–Matt 

27 Comments

Thanks for the thoughts, Matt… Hope you’ll post often! Go Oakland!

Hey Matt, Its good to read your thoughts and impressions. I hope too that you post often.

Greetings from Venezuela.

Lets go As

Matt, you’ve continued to be a professional, class-act in every way since you’ve come to Oakland. Even if the self-control, the professionalism, and the performance are all you get to model for the young pitching rotation, that’s plenty. Hope you get to stick around to watch them mature!

Mr. Holliday,
Boris is a greedy POS and he’s not looking out for what’s best for you, have fun having your future decided for you by a crooked ex-attorney. Oh and nice bomb tonight! Hope you continue your hot streak so the A’s get some good prospects in return.

I’m an A’s fan, but I love baseball more than a single team. Your stint with the A’s have won you a fan for life. Bill Beane be damned thank you. Good luck where ever you end up.

You never know. I think it’s premature to say it’s a foregone conclusion Holliday will depart after the season (let alone sooner). Now hear me out. IF (and I know, this is a big IF) we make the post-season this year, maybe the A’s brass would pony up some extra cash, and maybe Holliday would take a slight pay cut to stick with a contender who is already comfortable with. Lots of IFs and maybes, but I guess what I’m saying is that I’d love the thought of having Holliday beyond 2009, and maybe, just maybe the stars could align.

Hey Matt, I’m glad to see you’re blogging, and I look forward to reading the thoughts and perspectives of one of the best players in the league. (If you need a proofreader for your blog, I’d be happy to help; not that there are a lot of mistakes in your writing, but I just wanted to offer my services.)

I’ll admit that I was among those who were critical of your performance early in the year and I wondered if it were true that you were a Coors Field hitter. However, the tear you’ve been on for the past 20 or so games has been nothing short of amazing.

As for the A’s in general: I think you guys have turned a corner in the last four or five games. You’ve been firing on all cylinders, and it’s been extremely fun to watch. Maybe your radio interview the other day lit a fire under your teammates’ bums. Even if you do not want to be here in Oakland, we all want you here, so hopefully you can find some reason to stay and be happy for the rest of the year, and hopefully you can live your postseason dreams with the A’s.

If you’ve actually read this, keep up the good work! You really do mean a lot to this team and especially to the fans who, though few in number, are extremely passionate and knowledgeable about A’s baseball. Your presence on the club truly gives us something to look forward to.

Hey Matt, agree it’s great to see another round of young pitching prospects glow here in oakland. We were stunned when you joined the team, and although we’re realists, we’ll enjoy this season (or at least half of it) anyway, watching you kindle our offense with Giambi. Your performance w the Rocks in the playoffs was something, and now that summer is starting, the seasonal A’s mojo is heating up yet again. We *always* suck in the first 2 months. Here’s what I like– you have the obvious power, but you hit like a team player– not always going for the long ball, but hitting to all fields, whatever works. Impressive. Character– what counts. Glad to have you in green n gold– an interesting June n July for sure– let’s see how this plays out!

Nice shot last night. The season is still young, and a few win streaks can even things up in a hurry.
The West is NOT decided yet. Texas’ pitching will eventually show its weakness, LA’s bullpen is garbage, and Seattle is only a game up on us.
Holliday, I think you said it best in your radio interview about not shoveling any dirt just yet. Keep up exactly what your doing. This year’s team is special. GO A’s!!!!!!!

Welcome to the world of blogging, Matt! I followed the A’s more closely a few years ago but now that you’re on the team I’m trying to get caught up. It looks like it will be a fun season in the AL West. I’m looking forward to more blogging.
-Ellie

whats up Matt,first off my girl absolutely adores your little one when she saw the show on you ,hes a cute little kid.I actually was writing on some site last yr about trading for you and now i just hoping some miracle happens and you consider staying.You seem like a really good dude i cant even imagine how out of control my life would be if i where in your shoes so to stay humble,respectful,and grounded is very impressive .Im tired of having my jerseys turn into throwbacks please stay your boy saucy

Yo Matt, congrats on all the homers you’ve hit this year with the club. My favorite was the 3-run shot against the Rays in the 10th I believe it was. Also, you and Sweeney seem to be having fun out in the field robbing homeruns. I’m glad to see the team is coming around and that your not slamming your bat and helmet in fustration, trust me I’m sure I can say for most of the fans we were feeling the same way. One other thing I wanted to say, I think your an amazing player both on and off the field. Your hunger for a championship over money is what more professional athletes should be looking for. Anyways keep the faith Matt, over the last past 5 days I’ve been saying “from worst to first” I know you guys can do it.

Yo Matt, congrats on all the homers you’ve hit this year with the club. My favorite was the 3-run shot against the Rays in the 10th I believe it was. Also, you and Sweeney seem to be having fun out in the field robbing homeruns. I’m glad to see the team is coming around and that your not slamming your bat and helmet in fustration, trust me I’m sure I can say for most of the fans we were feeling the same way. One other thing I wanted to say, I think your an amazing player both on and off the field. Your hunger for a championship over money is what more professional athletes should be looking for. Anyways keep the faith Matt, over the last past 5 days I’ve been saying “from worst to first” I know you guys can do it.

Matt,
I’m thrilled you’re doing a blog! Really miss seeing you in the purple pinstripes. Looks like you’ve found your groove out in Oakland and I’m always impressed with how well you speak of your teammates. You are a class act where ever you play.
Definitely feels weird this season not seeing you in left field.

Matt come to NY the Mets need you! The fans here are hoping our GM omar minaya gets it done, hopefully we see you at citi field soon, continue having a good season in oakland in the meantime. Go Mets!

Matt,
I hope you’ll find the time to read these comments because what better way to find out what us fans truly feel about you MLB players. I have been an A’s fan since 1970 so I bleed the green and gold. This current team needs a cornerstone to build around and I personally cannot think of anyone better suited for that role than you. I realize that there is so much more to consider when deciding where to hang your hat, but having you here for a few years, along with the talented young pitching that you’ve already spoken of, would most likely return this franchise back to it’s winning ways. Mazzaro just got his second win this afternoon against the Orioles and that’s now six in a row for us…maybe the return is taking place as we speak. Regardless, continued success to you, whichever direction you choose Mr. Holliday.

I am glad to see you have a positive attitude and have not thrown in the towel yet. You are a proven leader who makes our club so much better in every aspect of the game. Hopefully you will find a way to stay put here in Oakland help us make a run for the championship.

Matt,
Reports that I have read say you want to play for a contender and that the best time of your life was when you were in the playoffs.
In St. Louis, you are a contender every year and you will be welcomed with sell-out crowds with standing O’s…not to mention you hit like .400 in busch!!! Is it possible to lose with Carpenter & Wainwright & Pujols & Holliday?

You and Albert finishing your careers in St. Louis will bring alot of Rings !!!!! Best baseball city in America!!!

Welcome to MLBlogs! I followed you a lot when you were with the Rockies because I’m a Padres fan, and no Padres fan can forget Game 163. Ahem. Anyways, hope you’re doing well in Oakland, and I wouldn’t mind having you in a Padres uniform sometime soon!
http://kaybee.mlblogs.com

holliday…lookin good in oakland, bud. keep it up.

Welcome to MLBlogs, Matt! Good luck the rest of this season and looking forward to your posts.

Mark/MLB.com
http://mlblogs.mlblogs.com
@MLB on Twitter – http://www.twitter.com/MLB

Matt-

I’m glad to see you posting- I think it will help you stay in touch with the real fans. Oakland has always had sort of ragtag bunch of fans- scattered far and wide across the nation (and the world I guess). Take me for example, I live in North Carolina -have lived here most of my life- but I’ve been a diehard A’s fan since age 10- go figure. Our supposed market team, the Braves don’t have half the class the A’s have. Anyway, you’ll see a lot of posts from fans across the nation who follow the A’s and your success with the team. I know everyone says you’ll be gone by July- but we’ll keep hoping you hang around and be part of something special. Take care.

Hi Matt
Well I just want to say I am a cubs fan sorry. There is something else though my Husband is a die-Hard Cardinal fan so you can imagine the games at our house lol. Well see i just want to know if my husband can meet you we have been though a lot this year we lost a baby and I might have to have brian surgery ill find out tomarrow. He has been a great support there all the way our 1 year wedding anniversry is this september. September 12th to be exact and i cant think of a better gift to give my husband. Even though i hope the cards go down! Well i use i have to like the cards if you can make that happen just for that game. LOL If not its ok and I understand lots of people wright something to you and i think this is a waste of my time but i thought maybe just maybe it could happen

yours truely
Susie White the cubs fan!!!!

From StLCharlie: My grandfather started me as a Cardinals fan putting me bed every night listening to the Cardinal games on the radio with Harry Caarey and Gabby Street in 1954, the year before the great Jack Buck started his career. I obviously have an untold number of memories, both good and bad, over the years. I have been a collector of Cardinals merchandise every since I was a kid. The past three years I have blogged the Cards numerous times telling them we need you in our lineup, and with Albert and the other hitters we would be championship quality. I am truly grateful that the A’s and Cards “did the deal” and brought you to the best baseball area in the entire world. Please stay here. We love ya!

Matt, I am a Dodger fan. I was at the game on the first base side of the diamond, waving one of those 50,000 white flags. Just before your “error” I was wondering how even the pitcher could concentrate. Not only the flags, but the noice was unbearable. I really felt bad for you when you missed that play, even though I was screaming that the Dodgers got one glimpse of life in that particular point of the game.
I honestly think the scorer should have given the hitter a double. How can you catch a ball that you can’t see?
Anyway, my take on the game was that your pitcher Franklin had a meltdown of major proportions. And your hitters? . If everyone of your teammates had hit a homerun , just like you did, everything would have been fine.
So, if any of the Cardinal fans in any way ,shape or form, don’t appreciate your caliber of play, come to L.A. and play for the Dodgers. I have always admired your caliber of play since you played with the Rockies. You are not a Bill Buckner at the tail end of your career. You have your best baseball years ahead.

Hey Matt,
I am a life long Cardinals fan and I just wanted to tell you how happy I was when you came on the team. I dont know a lot about the business end of baseball but I wanted to say we have great hopes that you will be able to stay a Cardinal for a long time. With my comment and a dollar you could buy a cup of coffee, but if you ever come through Jonesboro, Ar. I would love to buy you a cup of Joe.

TRACY CLAYTON

hey matt, why are you or your agent taking so long to let the cardinals if and when you are going to keep your career in st. louis

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