Philip Michaels offers this blog some recipe recommendations. I'm grateful, Philip. Although I'm not sure I can recommend the fish tacos. Isn't that a Padres thing?
I didn't see the A's game today. Went with the family to a Tom Chapin concert. If you're looking for good children's music that won't drive you insane with cliches, Tom Chapin's the guy. You may disagree, but it's a free country, and I am me, and you're not the boss of my brain.
It was a fun, entertaining day. After the show, we got to meet Chapin and his fellow performer Michael Mark (whose claim to fame is writing the theme song for Entertainment Tonight), and they couldn't have been nicer to the kids. And best of all, unlike the show at the Coliseum, we didn't have to witness somebody tear up their collarbone.
I guess we'll find out tomorrow how bad Nick Swisher is hurt. Swisher certainly hasn't been hitting much better than any of the other outfielders. So it's hard to say the A's will be missing his bat all that much.
Saturday, I was at the game and watched Swisher play first base, giving Scott Hatteberg a day off. This role may be where Swisher is missed the most.
Swisher looked pretty comfortable around first base. Hatteberg wore down at the end of last year because the A's had no adequate replacement at 1B. Durazo is a truly awful defensive first baseman. Kielty has played a little bit there, but I'm not sure he's much better. Maybe Keith Ginter ought to start taking some grounders at first. Otherwise, if Hatteberg gets nicked up and needs a couple of days off, we might end up seeing Dan Johnson.
But I'm guessing the A's will call up an outfielder, since none of them save Kotsay were hitting anyway. If the A's MLB site is to be believed, Matt Watson is the only other outfielder currently on the 40-man roster, so I'd call him the favorite. On the other hand, it also says the 40-man roster only has 37 players on it, so it could be someone else, like Jermaine Clark, who is a bit more versatile defensively.
On the positive side from Sunday's game: (a) the A's won, and (b) Barry Zito pitched well.
I'm still have some optimism about Zito; he had one bad game against Tampa, but otherwise has been pitching with a lot of bad luck. He's added a slurve, which he said on the post-game show today is really just his curveball thrown from a 10-to-4 instead of an 11-to-5 angle, which gives it a velocity in the upper 70s, instead of the high-60s-lower 70s with his curveball.
I've noticed this year that he's had a much greater variety of speeds on his pitches than in previous years. Before, he was just a three-pitch, three-speed pitcher. Now he has a larger palette of speeds and pitches to paint with. His fastballs used to be 86-89mph; now it varies between 82-89. His off-speed stuff was always 68-73; now that range is 68-79.
I've always felt that Zito's biggest problem is that didn't have enough ways to get somebody out if one of his pitches wasn't working. The more ingredients you have in your kitchen, the more creative you can be with your recipes.
It doesn't look like he has quite mastered his new tools yet, but give him time. The old dog of the A's pitching staff is still young enough at 26 to learn a few new tricks.