Why Ben Sheets May Choose Oakland
The rumors swirling around Ben Sheets recently have included the Oakland Athletics, which may come as a surprise to some people considering their budgetary concerns.
But from Ben Sheets’ perspective, signing with the A’s makes a lot of sense.
For one thing, making a comeback in Oakland should be less stressful than, say, New York City, Chicago, or a similarly large market. Let’s not forget that Sheets spent his entire career in small town Milwaukee, so there’s a comfort thing. Besides the smaller number of press and journalists hounding him 24 hours a day, there would likely be less pressure for Sheets to pitch if he suffers a minor setback.
But also important is the fact that by signing with the Athletics, Sheets is almost guaranteed to be in the thick of a pennant race. How so? Looking at Billy Beane’s past history, one would assume that he would hang on to Ben Sheets as long as the A’s are contending. But if things look even slightly bleak, Beane will be sure to trade Sheets in July to a desperate team that is either fighting for a playoff spot or fending off close rivals while sitting atop the standings.
So in a way, choosing Oakland could be Ben Sheets’ best decision — presuming his ultimate goal is to pitch in the postseason.
Now, if his main goal is about money, that’s a different story entirely.