A's prop comic Reddick faces challenge

August 6, 2012, 9:05 pm
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We have reached the point in the As season when the question must be asked:Is Josh Reddick going to start feeling the pressure every prop comic does when the shows gone on longer than the scripts have allowed?The Oakland outfielder went to a Spiderman costume to double-pie Coco Crisp the other night, after Oaklands 13th game-winning hit of the year. That puts him dangerously close to Brian Wilson-Sasquatch territory, and in a place where Dennis Rodmans wedding dress photo shoot is not that far over the horizon.Now this isnt really Reddicks fault. His heart was in the right place he was trying to create some results-based camaraderie on a team that has far too little of both over the past half-decade and he could never have known that the As would be doing this every eight games.
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But now its an obligation, something the audience has come to expect, like the Rolling Stones in their mid-70s playing Start Me Up, or Gallagher sledgehammering the melon. If the As do walk one off and Reddick doesnt produce, the customers feel jobbed.Still, as Wilson is finding out, one can never go back when it comes to props. They have to get bigger and bigger all the time, which is how Wilson ended up with Sasquatch as his latest running gag, no doubt en route to a pterodactyl, Godzilla and finally the mother ship in War of the Worlds.So it is with Reddick. He is stuck between a sugary frosting and a hard place here, because while he did his best to hold off this day, he went to a costume in Episode 13, and so he cant really go back to his uniform.And frankly, he may also have to finally abandon the Cool Whip and expand his repertoire to include pies, cakes and other pastries. Maybe even the tried-and-true seltzer-down-the-pants.This places Reddick in an impossible situation maintaining his focus as a player while lining up equipment for Episodes 13 through Whenever. Apple tarts? Wedding cakes? Scones shot from an air gun in the second deck?And what to wear? Zatanna from the Justice League? Tuxedo-with-tails-and-top-hat like some crazed Fred Astaire-Meets-The-Penguin ensemble? Sumo suit?Can he change the approach? Lowered from a helicopter? Using children or small animals to distract the target? A catapult?Can he use surrogates? Bob Melvin? John Fisher in a rare white-elk sighting of the teams majority owner? A monkey on a unicycle?Or does he go all in and do the whole thing naked and shrieking while riding in the car that the horrifying Stomper uses to make hisherits entrance?And what happens if he has to go again after that? When does spontaneity die? When is the final frontier breached? When is the shark jumped?Herein lies the real problem for Reddick, as it is for Wilson, as it is for anyone who becomes a staple of entertainment with foreign objects. Retro doesnt work, and neither does micro. The spectacle has to grow, or it dies. And unless the As are either planning to start winning more conventionally, or Reddick sprains an ankle trying to maximize his teammates facial strike zones, the game that never ends is on.Put it this way: If we see Fisher, well know the end is near. And if we see the monkey, well know a circus is about to sue.

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