Short-attention-span reading, and writing ...

Here's some PED-age relativism: Not getting your top starter suspended for the stretch run is sort of like trading for one.

So let's go along with the sense that the A's Bartolo Colon, who received a 50-game suspension last year, will probably avoid the wave of Biogenesis-tied suspensions that should hit soon, as reported by CBS's Jon Heyman.

If the A's were searching near and far for a high-level starter on the trade market just in case they lost Colon, they probably can put that on the back burner.

Which should only decrease general manager Billy Beane's motivation to stir up this quiet trade market before Wednesday's deadline, other than Tuesday's minor deal to acquire infielder Alberto Callaspo from the Angels for Grant Green.

Basically, if Beane wouldn't give away his best prospects to make a blockbuster deal last year -- in a much more active market -- I don't see him changing tactics and going great guns now.

  • OK, I should never try to predict Beane's movements; in a bad marketplace, he'll only push harder for a megadeal, and he loves megadeals.

    But there's an altered A's trade reality the last few years. These days, Beane has an "untouchable" list of players, which, as he told me last July, he never used to have.

    Last year, that list was headed by Dan Straily -- then a top prospect and now in the rotation.

    This time around, I believe Beane has put prospects Sonny Gray and Addison Russell on that list, and maybe it extends to prospect Michael Choice and top-line starter Jarrod Parker, too.

  • When you have the payroll factors he's dealing with and the desire to perennially stay in playoff form, Beane can't start giving away potential elite players who are under team control for a long time.

    Plus, he hasn't had such prime-level prospects lining the top levels of his system since Nick Swisher, Bobby Crosby, Rich Harden and Joe Blanton all came through from 2003 to 2005.

    Beane knows he has a very good team right now, and it is constructed to be good for a while.

    In this sellers' market, I can't see Beane sacrificing an elite prospect for a marginal gain, even if this is the A's best shot at a title in a long, long time.

    If the price for, say, Jake Peavy, started with any two of those names ... then the A's just weren't going to play that game this year.

    And that means they might not be doing much or anything at this deadline. It's against Beane's hyperkinetic nature, I know. But he can blame himself -- his team is built to last, without fiddling.

  • Every report indicates that Texas, which is already fading, probably will be losing slugger Nelson Cruz and Detroit could be losing shortstop Jhonny Peralta when the Biogenesis suspensions come.

    Tampa Bay and Boston loom as potential A.L. powerhouses in the playoffs, and you never know how the A's will match up in a short series.

    But the A's can get better this week just by watching Texas and Detroit get weaker.

    It's the 2013 PED/trade deadline rise-fall phenomenon.

  • Giants fans gobbled up every bit of Brian Wilson's act when it suited them, so why should they be shocked and alarmed because he signed with the hated Dodgers?

    Of course Wilson was going to make the most theatrical move possible. Of course it was going to feel stage-y and overproduced.

    You expected something demure out of a guy who wore a spandex suit to the ESPYs?

  • If Wilson can come back from his second Tommy John surgery and throw 93 mph on the corners into the postseason, the Dodgers will embrace the beard and the manic spotlight-hogging.

    And if Wilson can't pitch like that anymore, so what?

    There was no place for him on the Giants anymore, other than as a marketing sideshow. Wilson realized that, I assume the Giants realized that, and I believe large segments of the Giants' fan base will realize it, too, when and if he comes back to AT&T in Dodger blue this September.

    I can see the AT&T marketing push now: Boo the Beard. T-shirts available for $30. It'll be good theater. Wilson always is.

    Read Tim Kawakami's Talking Points blog at blogs.mercurynews.com/kawakami. Contact him at tkawakami@mercurynews.com.