5 ways to make Saturday's Barry Zito vs. Tim Hudson matchup feel right out of the early 2000s
Shout it from the rooftops: The hour of Zito-Hudson is almost at hand.
It's been 11 years since the two were last teammates, which is a pretty long time -- "TRL" and LiveJournal were still culturally relevant, just for reference. So, to give the two former A's some familiar surroundings, and as an excuse to namedrop Limp Bizkit, we've decided to go all-in on the early-2000s nostalgia and present a few fads we hope to see at the Coliseum this weekend.
Mound visits should only be made via Razor Scooter
Sure, you could just walk from the dugout, but really, why use your legs when you can attempt to fit your body on a narrow piece of metal (available in so many colors!) and impress all of your friends and teammates? Besides, it would ensure that Bruce Bochy always has a way to get home from the ballpark.
Ja Rule will both throw out the first pitch and deliver the national anthem
Getting to throw out a first pitch is a pretty good reflection of the zeitgeist at any current moment. And back in 2002 -- when the A's rode a 20-game win streak to a 103-59 record and an AL West crown -- no one was more zeitgeist-y than Ja Rule, who topped the Billboard chart for much of the year with both "Always on Time" (you know, this one) and a featured credit on Jennifer Lopez's "Ain't It Funny."
For one day only, Fruitopia will be made the dugout drink of choice
Gone from our lives since 2003 but remaining in our hearts forever, it was the drink that answered that eternal question: Is it possible to incorporate the word "psychic" into a flavor description? Although, it might be even more of a pain to wash out than Gatorade -- so, maybe avoid a walk-off win on Saturday, Oakland. Do it for the reporters.
Calls to the bullpen will instead be instant messages to the bullpen
This season has already shown the perils of bullpen phones, so let's instead harken back to a simpler time -- one of five-minute log-on times, the dulcet tones of a dial-up connection and friendly anthropomorphic illustrations:
The away messages would be awfully useful, too: "Left off the lineup card, be back later," for example.
All walk-up songs will be replaced by custom ringtones
Look, walk-up songs are the best. They're not only a piece of a given player's personality, but they also provide the clubhouse with ample prank potential. If you're going to get rid of them, even for a day, there'd better be a compelling reason -- and what reason could be more compelling than the few polyphonic seconds of pop music America spent inexplicable amounts of money on just 10 years ago? Zito himself has even broken into the music business, so maybe he can provide the soundtrack himself.