2002 Oakland Athletics season

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2002 Oakland Athletics
2002 AL West Champions
Major League affiliations
Location
Results
Record 103–59 (.636)
Divisional place 1st
Other information
Owner(s) Stephen Schott & Kenneth Hofmann
General manager(s) Billy Beane
Manager(s) Art Howe
Local television KICU-TV
FSN Bay Area
(Ray Fosse, Greg Papa)
Local radio KFRC
(Bill King, Ken Korach, Ray Fosse)
Previous season     Next season

The Oakland Athletics' 2002 season was the team's 35th in Oakland, California. It was also the 102nd season in franchise history. The Athletics finished first in the American League West with a record of 103-59.

The Athletics' 2002 campaign ranks among the most famous in franchise history. Following the 2001 season, Oakland saw the departure of three key players. Billy Beane, the team's general manager, responded with a series of under-the-radar free agent signings. The new-look Athletics, despite a comparative lack of star power, surprised the baseball world by besting the 2001 team's regular season record. The team is most famous, however, for winning 20 consecutive games between August 13 and September 4, 2002.[1] The Athletics' season was the subject of Michael Lewis' 2003 book Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game (as Lewis was given the opportunity to follow the team around throughout that season); A film adaptation of the book, also titled Moneyball, was released in 2011.

Off-season[edit]

Regular season[edit]

Summary[edit]

Oakland's 2002 campaign began on a tumultuous note. During the 2001-02 offseason, the team lost three key free agents to larger market teams: 2000 AL MVP Jason Giambi to the New York Yankees, outfielder Johnny Damon to the Boston Red Sox, and closer Jason Isringhausen to the St. Louis Cardinals. Faced with a number of significant roster holes, general manager Billy Beane sought to replace Damon and Giambi with free agent hitters Scott Hatteberg, David Justice, and Ray Durham (among others). Beane also made a number of key pitching acquisitions; most notably, he traded for Toronto Blue Jays reliever Billy Koch. Koch would ultimately succeed Isringhausen as the team's closer. Beane would also trade for then-unheralded starter Ted Lilly. Additionally, the season saw the MLB debuts of second baseman Mark Ellis and eventual starter Aaron Harang.

The new-look Athletics experienced a bumpy start to the 2002 regular season. The team followed a respectable 15-10 start with an abysmal 5-16 run; at the end of their slump, on May 23rd, the team's record stood at 20-26. From this point forward, the Athletics' fortunes improved significantly. In a prelude to the team's famous late-season winning streak, the Athletics went 16-1 from June 6th to June 24th. The surge propelled the club into within two games of first place. For now, this was as close as the team would get; a prolonged funk saw the A's play roughly .500 baseball for the next month-and-a-half. This period would end with an unremarkable 2-1 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays on August 12th.

On August 13th, the Athletics began their AL-record 20-game win streak. The streak's first win came courtesy of Barry Zito, who allowed three runs (one earned) over eight innings in a 5-4 victory over the Jays. Over the next several weeks, stellar pitching, hitting, and defense would all play a significant role in the Athletics' surge. Most notable were the efforts of fourth starter Cory Lidle. During the month of August, Lidle went 5-0 while posting a scant 0.20 earned run average (he allowed one run his final start of the month); three of his five winning decisions fell within the confines of the streak. Even still, many of the Athletics' victories were by narrow margins; closer Billy Koch would record either a win or save in twelve of the streak's twenty wins.

The Athletics' 18th and 19th wins came courtesy of Miguel Tejada walk-off hits. On September 4th, Oakland sought to win its 20th consecutive game; in doing so, the team hoped to break the 1947 New York Yankees' American League record of nineteen consecutive wins. The opponent was the Kansas City Royals. Over the first three innings of the game, Oakland shelled Kansas City pitchers Paul Byrd and Darrell May for a total of 11 runs while building a seemingly insurmountable 11-0 lead. Sloppy play down the stretch, however, allowed the Royals to score five runs apiece in the fourth and eighth innings. In the ninth, Billy Koch would surrender a two-out single to Royals pinch hitter Luis Alicea; the single would allow pinch runner Kit Pellow to score the tying run. As such, the Athletics would enter the bottom of the ninth inning with the score tied at 11-11. In one of the most famous moments in Oakland Athletics history, pinch hitter Scott Hatteberg then hit a one-out solo home run off of Kansas City reliever Jason Grimsley. The home run would clinch an AL-record 20th consecutive victory for the Athletics.

Oakland's streak would come to an end with a 6-0 loss to the Minnesota Twins on September 5th. The A's would continue to play well down the stretch, as evidenced by their final record of 103-59. The club's late-season surge allowed it to hold off the Anaheim Angels, who finished only four games behind them at 99-63. Oakland's regular season exploits, however, would once again fail to translate into postseason success. The team would again lose the American League Division Series (this time to the Twins, who also ended the 20-game streak) in five games.

Shortstop Miguel Tejada and starting pitcher Barry Zito would go on to win the American League MVP and Cy Young Award, respectively. Tejada himself would leave the Athletics following the 2003 season, while Zito would last until the end of the 2006 campaign.

Game log[edit]

2002 Game Log (103–59)[6]
Legend:           = Win           = Loss           = Postponement
Bold = Athletics team member

Season standings[edit]

AL West W L Pct. GB
Oakland Athletics 103 59 .636 --
Anaheim Angels 99 63 .611 4
Seattle Mariners 93 69 .574 10
Texas Rangers 72 90 .444 31

Draft picks[edit]

  • June 4, 2002: Nick Swisher was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 1st round (16th pick, compensatory) of the 2002 amateur draft.
  • June 4, 2002: Joe Blanton was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 1st round (24th pick, compensatory) of the amateur draft.
  • June 4, 2002: John McCurdy was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 1st round (26th pick) of the amateur draft.
  • June 4, 2002: Benjamin Fritz was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 1st round (30th pick, compensatory) of the amateur draft.
  • June 4, 2002: Jeremy Brown was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 1st round (35th pick, compensatory) of the amateur draft.
  • June 4, 2002: Mark Teahen was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 1st round (39th pick, compensatory) of the amateur draft.

Trades[edit]

Roster[edit]

2002 Oakland Athletics
Roster
Pitchers Catchers

Infielders

Outfielders Manager

Coaches

Postseason[edit]

The Athletics clinched the American League West with a regular season record of 103–59, advancing to the first round of the postseason. They were defeated in the 2002 American League Division Series three games to two by the American League Central champion Minnesota Twins,[9] who would be defeated in the 2002 American League Championship Series by the eventual World Series champion Anaheim Angels.

Postseason game log[edit]

2002 Postseason Game Log (2–3)[9]
Legend:           = Win           = Loss           = Postponement
Bold = Athletics team member

Player statistics[edit]

Pitching[edit]

Player POS G IP W L SV ERA SO
Tim Hudson SP 34 238.1 15 9 0 2.98 152
Barry Zito SP 35 229.1 23 5 0 2.75 182
Mark Mulder SP 30 207.1 19 7 0 3.47 159
Cory Lidle SP 31 192.0 8 10 0 3.89 111
Aaron Harang SP 16 78.1 5 4 0 4.83 64
Billy Koch CP 84 93.2 11 4 44 3.27 93
Chad Bradford RP 75 75.1 4 2 2 3.11 56
Jim Mecir RP 61 67.2 6 4 1 4.26 53
Jeff Tam RP 40 40.1 1 2 0 5.13 14
Mike Venafro RP 47 37.0 2 2 0 4.62 16
Mike Fyhrie RP/SP 16 48.2 2 4 0 4.44 29
Erik Hiljus RP/SP 9 45.2 3 3 0 6.50 29
Mike Magnante RP 32 28.2 0 2 0 5.97 11
Ted Lilly RP/SP 6 23.1 2 1 0 4.63 18
Ricardo Rincón RP 25 20.1 0 0 1 3.10 19
Mike Holtz RP 16 14.0 0 0 0 6.43 7
Micah Bowie RP 13 12.0 2 0 0 1.50 8
Totals 1452.0 103 59 48 3.68 1021
AL Ranking / 14 2 1 13 4 1 7

Batting[edit]

Player POS G AB AVG H 2B 3B HR RBI
Ramón Hernández C 136 403 .233 94 20 0 7 42
Scott Hatteberg 1B 136 492 .280 138 22 4 15 61
Mark Ellis 2B 98 345 .272 94 16 4 6 35
Eric Chavez 3B 153 585 .275 161 31 3 34 109
Miguel Tejada SS 162 662 .308 204 30 0 34 131
David Justice LF 118 398 .266 106 18 3 11 49
Terrence Long CF 162 587 .240 141 32 4 16 67
Jermaine Dye RF 131 488 .252 123 27 1 24 86
Ray Durham DH 54 219 .274 60 14 4 6 22
John Mabry LF 89 193 .275 53 13 1 11 40
Jeremy Giambi LF 42 157 .274 43 7 0 8 17
Olmedo Sáenz 1B 68 156 .276 43 10 1 6 18
Greg Myers C 65 144 .222 32 5 0 6 21
Randy Velarde 2B 56 133 .226 30 8 0 2 8
Frank Menechino 2B 38 132 .312 27 7 0 3 15
Adam Piatt LF 55 137 .234 32 8 0 5 18
Carlos Peña 1B 40 124 .218 27 4 0 7 16
Eric Byrnes UT 90 94 .245 23 4 2 3 11
Esteban Germán 2B 9 35 .200 7 0 0 0 0
Mike Colangelo OF 20 23 .174 4 1 0 0 0
Larry Sutton UT 7 19 .105 2 0 0 1 3
Jason Grabowski LF 4 8 .375 3 1 1 0 1
Jose Flores UT 7 3 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Cody McKay C 2 3 .667 2 0 0 0 2
Barry Zito P 35 4 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Tim Hudson P 34 5 .200 1 1 0 0 0
Mark Mulder P 30 5 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Aaron Harang P 16 3 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Cory Lidle P 31 1 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Totals 5558 .261 1450 279 28 205 772
AL Ranking / 14 9 8 9 12 10 4

Note: Only players with at least one at-bat are listed.

Farm system[edit]

Level Team League Manager
AAA Sacramento RiverCats Pacific Coast League Bob Geren
AA Midland RockHounds Texas League Tony DeFrancesco
A Modesto A's California League Greg Sparks
A Visalia Oaks California League Webster Garrison
Short-Season A Vancouver Canadians Northwest League Orv Franchuk
Rookie AZL Athletics Arizona League Ruben Escalera

References[edit]

Footnotes:

  1. ^ Great Baseball Feats, Facts and Figures, 2008 Edition, p. 377, David Nemec and Scott Flatow, A Signet Book, Penguin Group, New York, ISBN 978-0-451-22363-0
  2. ^ "Mark Bellhorn Statistics and History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  3. ^ "David Justice Trades and Transactions". Baseball Almanac. Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  4. ^ "Randy Velarde Statistics and History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  5. ^ "Justin Duchscherer Statistics and History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  6. ^ "2002 Oakland Athletics Schedule". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  7. ^ a b c "2002 Oakland Athletics Trades and Transactions". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  8. ^ "Ray Durham Statistics and History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  9. ^ a b "2002 American League Division Series". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 7 July 2014. 

General references:

Preceded by
Seattle Mariners
2001
AL West Championship Season
2002
Succeeded by
Oakland Athletics
2003