The A’s head into Game 1 of the AL Division Series on Monday with a lot on the line. They will be facing their AL West rival Houston Astros, which means the storylines will be spicy, but will the world take the Green and Gold seriously?
A’s outfielder Mark Canha is no stranger to being associated with the term “underrated,” at least when it comes to himself personally. But as a team, he said the A’s always will be in that category.
“I think the Oakland A’s will always be underrated and underappreciated,” Canha said on Monday. “That’s just the nature of the business. We’re a quote-unquote 'small market' team. People probably expected the White Sox to win the last series.
"I feel like we wear that badge as a motivator.”
The A’s won a best-of-three AL Wild Card Series against the White Sox which was a claw-to-the-finish race, but they won and that's all that mattered against a surprising team being led by AL MVP hopeful José Abreu.
The 2020 season, although unprecedented, still had the A’s projected to do well. The beginning of the upcoming series certainly is an indicator of that as well as taking the AL West title, but people remained unsure. Canha is used to that.
Canha collected 47 hits in 60 games this season with a .246/.387/.407 slash line, all while being one of the more versatile players on the team, which proved beneficial as the A's got hit by multiple injury bugs. He also remained one of the more dependable players.
Last season, Canha was dubbed as one of the league’s most underrated players. During spring training he told NBC Sports California he was ready to rid himself of the term, however, it appears he has learned to embrace it.
“I’ll take it as a compliment,” Canha said on Monday. “I take pride in my ability to be valuable and help the team win and I know there are certain metrics that suggest that I do that and yeah, I take it as a sign that I’m doing something positive and helping the team.
"I approach it like ‘Keep doing what you’re doing,’ if you call that underrated then, good for me.”