|Newly acquired Oakland backstop John Jaso will provide|
a good hitting presence for Oakland.
|Hiroyuki Nakajima is just thrilled to be on the Athletics|
While these frugal moves may effectively improve Oakland, it seems probably that a repeat is unlikely. It may seem unduly cynical to be skeptical of a team's chances when they are fresh off of a division championship, but that championship can be accredited more on happenstance then Billy Beane's strategic prowess. The Angels, acting completely the opposite of Oakland's stingy nature, signed 2010 MVP Josh Hamilton to an enormous five year contract. The Rangers fall from the top was due to an unexpected collapse that was in no way predicated on the A's budget. It's strictly an issue of opinion, but much like the Brewers and Orioles, teams carrying the burden of a small budget do, from time to time, need to stray from there usual spending habits in order to sustain their success.
So with the postseason officially over now that the first spring training game has completed, I can say that I think the Athletics had a just OK postseason. There are plenty of good players (Sean Burnett and Dan Haren for example) who signed extremely team-friendly contracts, so affordability is not an argument. Time will tell if the A's will see the postseason again in 2013, but I wouldn't count on it.