A’s stun the Yankees as they rally in the tenth as Davis’ walk off bloop ends it 8-7

June 16, 2017

MLB, Oakland Athletics

Oakland Athletics’ Khris Davis, second from right, is hoisted by teammates after making the game winning hit against the New York Yankees in the tenth inning of a baseball game Thursday, June 15, 2017, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

by Jerry Feitelberg

OAKLAND– The Oakland A’s won a ten-inning thriller on a walk-off bloop single by Khris Davis with the bases loaded and two out to defeat the New York Yankees 8-7. The A’s blew five leads in the game as the Yankees scored three times in the sixth and one in seventh, one in the eighth, one in the ninth, and one in the tenth. The A’s never trailed in the game until the Yankees took a one-run lead in the tenth and the situation looked dire as the first two hitters in the tenth made outs.  Rajai Davis singled and went to third on a double by Chad Pinder. The Yanks wanted no part of Jed Lowrie as he had three hits in the game, so they gave him an intentional walk to load the bases. Davis had two strikes on him but was able to bloop the ball into shallow center field. Yankees’ second baseman Starlin Castro made a valiant effort to catch the ball, but it dropped out of his glove as he lay stretched out in the field. Davis was the recipient of the pie treatment after the team raced out onto the field to express their joy in a very dramatic come-from-behind win.

Sonny Gray started for Oakland Thursday night. Gray was solid for the first five innings. The A’s gave him a three-run lead, but he was tagged for three runs in the sixth by the Yankees. The A’s bullpen was not stellar as they gave up a single run in each of the next four innings.  The A’s, to their credit, also scored a run in three consecutive innings to regain the lead. The only time the A’s didn’t answer was in the bottom of the ninth. They loaded the bases but could not score, and the game went into extra innings. The game summary follows below.

The Yankees threatened to score in the top of the first. Bett Gardner, leading off for the Bronx Bombers doubled to right center field. Gray struck out Aaron Hicks for the first out. The Yankees’ rookie right fielder and current hitting star, singled on the first pitch from Gray. The ball was hit so hard, Gardner was not able to score. Gray struck out Starlin Castro for the second out. Gray walked Gary Sanchez to load the bases but got out of the jam when Didi Gregorius flew out to right for the third out.

The A’s Jed Lowrie facing lefty Jordan Montgomery for the first time, sent one of Montgomery’s offerings into the left-center-field bleachers to give the ‘s the lead 1-0. For Lowrie, it was his eighth home run of the year.

The A’s plated two more in the bottom of the second. With two, out Montgomery walked Matt Chapman. The next hitter, Josh Phegley hit a ball that bounced over the wall for a ground-rule double. Chapman stopped at third. A’s shortstop Adam Rosales lined a double down the third base line that drove in Chapman and Phegley. The A’s lead 3-0 after two complete.

In the top of the sixth, Sonny Gray could not extricate himself from a jam that he helped to create. With one out, Starlin Castro singled. Gray walked Gary Sanchez, and Didi Gregorius singled to load the bases. Gray needed to retire Chase Headley. Headley won the battle as he singled to drive in Castro and Sanchez. Former Athletic, Chris Carter singled to left to drive in Gregorius to tie the game at three.  Gray’s night was over as A’s manager, Bob Melvin took Gray out of the game and replaced him with Sean Doolittle. Doolittle struck out Austin Romine for the second out and retired Brett Gardner on a ground ball to second. The A’s broke the tie in the bottom of the sixth when Yonder Alonso sent a 2-0 pitch over the center field wall for his 17th round-tripper of the season. The A’s own a 4-3 lead after six innings of play.

The Yankees rallied to tie the game in the top of the seventh. Doolittle struck out Aaron Hicks to start the inning. Melvin replaced him with Ryan Madson. Madson retired Aaron Judge for the second out. Starlin Castro singled and then stole second to get into scoring position. Gary Sanchez doubled to drive in Castro with the tying run. Madson struck out Gregorius to end the inning. The A’s answered once again as they parlayed a single by Matt Joyce, a Rajai Davis sacrifice bunt moved Joyce to second, and Chad Pinder’s single up the middle drove in Joyce with the go-ahead run. The score after seven complete has the A’s ahead 5-4.

The Yankees tied the game again in the eighth. With John Axford pitching, Chris Carter continued to torment his former team when he hit a moonshot into the left-field bleachers. It was Carter’s 7th of the year. The A’s answered by manufacturing a run in their half of the inning. Yonder Alonso singled to get the rally started.  Another former Athletic, Tyler Clippard walked Matt Chapman to put men on at first and second with one out. Yankee Manager Joe Girardi brought in closer Delllin Betances to pitch. Betances walked Stephen Vogt who was pinch-hitting for Josh Phegley to load the bases. The next hitter Matt Joyce hit a slow roller to second. The Yanks got the force at second but the throw to first was late, and the A’s regained the lead 6-5.

The Yankees, being the Yankees, scored the tying run in the top of the ninth. A’s closer Santiago Casilla gave up a double to Starlin Castro. Gary Sanchez singled to drive him in with the tying run. Sanchez stole second, and after the A’s gave Headley a free pass, Sanchez came out of the game as he appeared to injure his hand on the slide into the base. Casilla struck out Chris Carter to end the inning. The game is tied at six heading into the bottom of the ninth.

The Yankees regained the lead in the tenth. With one out, Brett Gardner singled. With a 3-2 count on Rob Refsnyder, Gardner running on the pitch, made it to third when Refsnyder beat out a slow ground ball to third for a hit. Liam Hendriks walked Aaron Judge to load the bases. Garner scored on a sacrifice fly to right by Castro. Yanks lead 7-6 halfway through the tenth inning. The A’s loaded the bases with two outs, and it was up to Khris Davis. Davis bloops a single to center and the A’s win 8-7 in a walk off.

Game Notes- The A’s line was 8 runs on 14 hits and no errors. The Yankees scored 7 times on 16 hits and they, too, didn’t make an miscue. Jed Lowrie was one of the hitting stars for Oakland with a single, triple, and home run. He needed a double to complete the cycle. The winning pitcher was Liam Hendriks. Hendriks was the seventh pitcher used by Bob Melvin in the game. The loss went to Giovanny Gallegos.

Game two of the four-game series will be played Friday night at 6 pm. There will be a fireworks display after the game.

The A’s announced that they have designated for assignment the veteran third baseman Trevor Plouffe. Plouffe was hitting just .214, and the A’s called up Matt Chapman from Nashville to take his spot on the roster. Chapman made his Major League debut. He did not get a hit, but he walked twice and was flawless in the field.

The A’s also announced that they have relieved pitching coach Curt Young of his duties. Young was in his second stint as pitching coach for the A’s. He was here from 2004 to 2010. He went to Boston in 2011 but returned to Oakland and was here from 2012 to June 15th, 2017. He was replaced by Scott Emerson.

Time of game was four hours and 29 minutes, and there were 21,838 people in attendance. Lefty Sean Manaea will be going for his fifth win in a row, and he will be opposed by the righty Luis Severino.

About rxslugger

Retired pharmacist who now has a career as a sports writer and broadcaster

View all posts by rxslugger


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