First off, Mark Mulder was traded away to bring in Dan Haren, you yutz, and proceeded to suck in St. Louis.
Their current payroll is $62,310,000. The combined salary of those 5 starting pitchers in 2009 is $38.8 mil (would be more, except for the little issue that Mulder isn't even signed with anyone anymore). Zito and Harden have been bad, Hudson has yet to throw an inning in 2009.
So we're left with Huston Street. He's a relief pitcher. For this and a scrap pile of borderline MLB prospects, you got a season of Matt Holliday, the runner up for NL MVP just one year ago, to make a run at a weak AL West, and it didn't work.
So yes, I've no idea how Billy Beane messed that one up. I'm sure the A's would be much better off spending an extra $34,000,000 for a group of 5th starters. That's much better than making a deal for 23 year old Gio Gonzalez, who's currently 4-1 w/ a 2.51 ERA in the hitter friendly PCL, and 23. Or Aaron Cunningham, who's 22 and has an .882 OPS in his minors career, and plays center field. Or Adrian Cardenas, who's 21, plays 2B, and rocks a .299/.365/.414 in his minors career. Or Chris Carter, who's 22 and has a .399 OBP in AA Midland. And Brett Anderson, who had a 5.06 K/BB ratio in the minors (Yes he's getting shelled this season. Hey, he's also 21. He'll be fine).
And Moneyball is a smarter way of doing business. Did you not notice how much things changed in MLB after that book was published? Did you not notice that the Red Sox have Bill James working for them? Did you not notice that Beane disciple JP Riccardi is turning the Blue Jays into a contender in the obscenely tough AL East? Did you not notice the "old school" GMs like Bill Bavasi and Steve Phillips getting absolutely tooled on by the new guys?
The A's don't let these guys walk or trade them because Moneyball hates paying guys, it's because THEY CANNOT AFFORD IT. KANSAS EFFIN CITY HAS THEM BEAT IN PAYROLL BY NEARLY $8,000,000.
And out of the 4 teams who spend less than the A's, 2 are last place teams, one is 1/2 a game out of last, and one of them has Hanley Ramirez.
6 of the top 10 prospects in the A's farm system were acquired through trades. 7 of the top 100 minor league prospects according to baseball america entering 2009 were in the A's system (Anything over 5 is very good). Keith Law rated their system #3 of 30 teams. These are guys that will help your team going forward, for a whole lot less than other teams, allowing the A's a chance to compete.
So please, do your research before bashing things you don't know about.
"im an a's fan and i was thinking the exact same thing. you forgot blanton too. a's could have the best pitching staff in the al if billy beane hadn't traded them for minor league prospects. someones got to knock some sense into billy beane and tell him its not about the moneyball anymore obviously"
WRONG WRONG WRONG SO WRONG.
All Moneyball said was to embrace objective analysis and find the areas of the market where value exists. At the time of the book, the main area was on base percentage. Teams read that, realized after 100+ years of caring too much about batting average that Brian Giles is probably a better investment than Juan Pierre, and there went that advantage. Then other teams realized that K/BB ratio and WHIP are better forward projectors than W-L and ERA, and there went the pitching advantage.
And you know why these advantages went by the wayside? Cause other teams started to mimic the A's system, that's why. It's no coincidence why:
League in 2001/2009
OBP: .332/.333 (roids vs. no roids btw before calling that insignificant)
Sac Hits (01/08 this time): 1607/1526
BB (01/08): 15,806/16,337
Teams aren't giving up outs as much, walking a bit more, there's evidently more emphasis on the A's way across MLB.
And Joe Blanton's been crap, too. You got Josh Outman and Adrian Cardenas in the deal to get rid of him. That = better.
I've had it with people who bash Moneyball without understanding what it's saying.