The A’s young pitchers seem to have caught a flu-like bug: the Spring Training Pitching Virus. One pitcher has a meltdown on the mound and infects most of the others, spreadint like wildfire through the pitching staff. A few of the members have a natural immunity. But like all virus infections, it should be over in 5-7 days.
I think that the uncertainty over whether a given pitcher will be in the starting rotation, the bullpen or the minors has contributed greatly to this malaise. Once the starting rotation and the bullpen are solidified–barring further injuries–the guys will settle down to do their jobs and they will perform up to their awesome capabilities.
Spring Training is longer this year. By this time last year, the A’s were playing real games (in Japan). It could be that the guys are ready to get going with the season and the extra time in Arizona is wearing on them.
My prediction? When the season opens, they will do well. I am looking forward to cheering them on.