Tanaka Fans 13, But A’s Rally Late to Win 4-1 in Bronx

May 26, 2017

MLB, Oakland Athletics

Oakland Athletics’ Sean Manaea (55) delivers a pitch during the first inning of a baseball game against the New York Yankees Friday, May 26, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

By Matthew Harrington

The Oakland Athletics waited out a sharp Masahiro Tanaka, then scored four runs in the final two innings to beat the New York Yankees 4-1 Friday night in the Bronx. Tanaka punched out 13 A’s, but wound up the loser in a pitcher’s duel against surprise starter Sean Manaea. Jed Lowrie and Khris Davis knocked in runs for the A’s (22-25) and Stephen Vogt cracked a two-run home run in the ninth to double Oakland’s lead. Didi Gregorious plated the only Yankees run.

Manaea (3-3, 4.35 ERA) took the hill in place of Kendall Graveman who is expected to be placed on the disabled list Saturday. There is no word on who will fill in the rest of the rotation, but Manaea proved capable against the Bronx Bombers (27-18). He pitched seven innings, allowing four hits while striking out 8. The Throwin’ Samoan managed to pick up the win after his offense rallied off a stingy Tanaka in the 8th.

Tanaka scattered four hits entering the 8th to go with his career-high baker’s dozen of punch outs, but gave up a one-out single to  Adam Rosales. With 106 pitches in the book, manager Joe Girardi pulled his starter in favor of Tyler Clippard. Clippard threw away a pickoff throw to allow Rosales to move to third, but Rosales was cut down on Rajai Davis’ fielder’s choice.

Davis moved to second on a steal, Matt Joyce then walked to bring the red-hot Jed Lowrie to the plate. Lowrie earlier in the game extended his hitting streak to 7 consecutive at-bats with a hit before being retired on a ground out, but against Clippard he delivered again. The second baseman singled to right field to plate Davis. Khris Davis then singled on a ground ball deep in the hole at short that plated Joyce for a 2-0 lead. Girardi challenged that Davis was out at first, but the call on the field stood.

Jonathan Holder replaced Clippard in the 9th, but Trevor Plouffe greeted him with a single. Vogt then took a belt-high offering to the short porch in right field for his 3rd homer of the year and a 4-0 lead. Santiago Casilla took the mound in the bottom of the inning, walking Aaron Hicks to open the inning. Hicks would score after advancing to third on a Starlin Castro single then scoring on Gregorious’ sacrifice fly. That’d be all the damage New York would muster, making Tanaka (5-4, 5.86 ERA) the tough-luck loser.

The A’s have called up Jharel Cotton to take Saturday’s start against Vallejo Native C.C. Sabathia. The 1 pm ET start will be the first of Cotton’s second stint with the team after making the club out of spring training after a brief debut last season.

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