When it hits the fan!

Written by Diamond Lil

Open Letter From a Diehard Fan

Now that the Coalition has been heard and seen by many people both in the "cyberworld" and in the "hard copy world" as well, some questions have been posed and issues have been raised.

First we have been asked why we created the Coalition and what do we really expect to achieve with our movement. Some have even questioned our loyalty as fans.

I would like to address those issues and answer some of the questions.

Our group came together in cyberspace during years of participating at a conference style forum. We talk and live baseball and we are what is commonly called the diehards and hardcore baseball fans.

We all look like normal, hardworking , fun loving people and we are. But true baseball fans are a very special breed of people.

Baseball fans are the most tolerant fans in the world. We never look for instant gratification like football fans do. We leave our houses, face long distances in commute traffic, after a hard day's work,

Knowing that our team, if good and lucky, has only a 50% chance of winning the game that day. We make a long term commitment with the team and it's players. It is a long season and there is an awful lot to remember as the days go on. We follow and endure the pain or the thrill of each and everyone of the player's fielding and running and at bats. And we are thrilled when they succeed 2 times out of four or five at the plate.

And we agonize with them at all the missed opportunities and the ‘ what-could-have-beens’.And we keep coming back, day after day. Sometimes loss after loss for days on end. We are indeed a very tolerant group of people.

We grow to know these players and love them because they become part of our everyday life. We know all their bruises, aches and pains. We praise and love them when they only succeed less than 50% of the time. That is all we ask of them. We love, respect and know how hard it is to succeed at this wonderful and beloved game of baseball.

We are broken hearted when the players we have bonded with leave for one reason or another. We try to keep a stiff upper lip and for the love of the game and for our legacy, we try to forgive and forget, but we really don't . It just keeps hurting forever.. This game just keeps breaking our hearts. They come back wearing other colors and we grieve and secretly still cheer and marvel at their success and achievements. And we try to mend our broken hearts. We keep a stiff upper lip. We try to forgive and forget. This is how we are. This is what a diehard baseball fan is like.

So, as diehards and hardcore fans, we got tired of reading of how A's fans are not knowledgeable and are really so laid back that they don't deserve to have the owners spend all the money it takes to field a competitive team. We have been told that all we really care about is 'dot racing' and the 'cap/ball trick'. We have been accused of being indifferent and way too mellow as fans. For the last 3 or 4 years, we have been offered beanie babies and fireworks instead of real MLB.

We have seen the players we have followed since their rookie years traded away when at the verge of greatness. We have seen our once great legacy become a far and distant past.

So we have become intolerant for a change. Intolerant of this ownership that does not show the sensitivity necessary to own a baseball team.

We have come together as a fan coalition to show our discontent, and to show that we have been treated unfairly by an ownership that has the moral responsibility to continue to honor and respect the legacy of this franchise.

The goal of the Coalition is to reach out to as many fans as we can to prove we are out there, tired of the mediocre baseball they have given us, but ready to rally behind an ownership that is willing to make a long term commitment to first, keep the team in Oakland, and second, make a concerted effort to field a major league level team.

This present ownership has not shown a commitment to our expectations as fans.

We have written to players who comprise our legacy, telling them how we feel. We have written to politicians and to Central baseball.

The threat of losing our team looms over our heads. No baseball fan should ever be made to experience that pain.

We want this present ownership to follow the example of the Haas family and at least become motivated sellers, for the good of baseball in Oakland. Let baseball be in the hands of people that know and respect baseball. An ownership willing to do what it takes to keep baseball in Oakland where it belongs.

We, Oakland A's fans, deserve recognition and respect and this is why we created the Oakland A’s Fan Coalition.

by Diamond Lil

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