There's always something about Josh Reddick that creates a buzz, and not just because the A's right fielder looks a little like a tumbleweed with muscles.

The Oakland surge in 2012 from 13 games out of first place to winning the American League West had much to do with Reddick, who led the team with 32 home runs and 85 RBIs.

If the A's are going to repeat as A.L. West champions, they will need the same kind or even a better effort from Reddick, who went from being an afterthought in Boston to a star in Oakland. Along the way, being in the Bay Area with a young team helped set Reddick's personality free -- as did playing alongside free-spirited outfielder/D.H. Jonny Gomes.

Gomes has moved on as a free agent to the Red Sox, but Reddick remains and has every hope of expanding the cool clubhouse vibe that Gomes helped set in motion last season. When Reddick walked into the A's clubhouse Friday morning with a long, scraggly beard and flowing locks, it led one of his teammates to hail him as "Hillbilly Jesus."

"I don't see the chemistry here changing a whole lot," Reddick said after putting on the green and gold for the first time this spring. "There are valuable guys who are gone, but we've got a whole lot of guys who were here, who knew what it was like and who can keep it going."

One of those is Reddick himself.