Billy Beane

Report: Troy Tulowitzki is a traitor to the Oakland A’s

After doing what they always do, the Colorado Rockies are probably going to have to trade the franchise’s most talented player in relatively short order. The Rockies began the season 7-2, and now they’re 12-19. Quick start, even faster fade. That’s our Rockies!

One can’t really blame Troy Tulowitzki for being over the whole situation. The team, the always-awful pitching staff, the losing. And if he believes that it’s harder on a player to spend half his time at altitude (that’s just my idea — he hasn’t said anything of the sort), all the more reason to request a trade to a contending team closer to sea level.

Cue Jon Heyman of CBS Sports:

Perhaps the true reality is that Tulowitzki wants to be traded. But only if he gets to go to the perfect team, or a close facsimile — he is said to favor the Yankees, Giants, Dodgers and Angels. And only if he isn’t the one instigating the trade.

As if A’s fans didn’t already have it bad enough with their team at 13-23, the worst record in the American League. Now one of their own is reportedly hoping to end up with the Angels or Giants, which is either incorrect or an indication that Tulowitzki has changed over the years.

Tulowitzki — owed $20 million per season through 2019, $14 million in 2020 and either $15 million or a $4 million buyout in 2021 (when he’ll be 36 years old) — is presumably out of Oakland’s price range. But the Sunnyvale native grew up an A’s fan, and according to Mark Purdy’s 2011 column about Tulowitzki, he carried a piece of that Green & Gold fandom with him to Colorado.

Last winter when he was honored at a Hot Stove Banquet in San Jose, a grade-schooler during a question-and-answer session wondered if Tulowitzki ever wished he could play for the Giants. Tulowitzki said no, because he grew up as an A’s fan, and so he didn’t like the Giants at all — and as a Rockies player, he now wanted to beat them every chance he could.

This probably explains why Jay Alves, the Rockies’ vice president of public relations, occasionally receives letters from people who complain that because they were wearing Giants gear, Tulowitzki refused to sign their baseballs or caps. Tulowitzki says that’s not true.

“If it’s a kid, I will sign,” he said.

But adults? Not so much, if they’re wearing orange.

A few things worth noting.

1. Boo to the Giants fans who went as far as to tattle on Tulo because he didn’t sign something. Those fans are right at the bottom — next to the jackals who touch baseballs that are in play — on the fan respectability scale.

2. Trading for Tulowitzki and asking someone to make change positions (Crawford, Brandon) seems like a pretty expensive way to solve San Francisco’s third base problem. To Heyman’s credit, the Giants weren’t one of the 11 teams he listed as “logical landing spots.”

3. It sounds like Tulowitzki wants to land on a winning team on the West Coast … or the Yankees. I’m surprised he isn’t a Yankee yet, but the Rockies are a delusional bunch and probably thought they’d contend this year. With all this talk about Tulowitzki meeting with his agent, he’ll probably be Derek Jeter’s replacement in no time. #Re2pect

Then again, it’d be the Billy Beaniest move possible for the A’s to trade for Tulowitzki now. Goodbye, Scott Kamir; adios, Sonny Gray; nice knowin’ ya, Marcus Semien; good luck, Matt Olson; don’t let the door hit you on the way out, Stomper — you’re on your way to Denver in exchange for Tulowitzki, two single-A pitching prospects, and Dinger.

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