By Charlie O. Mallonee
The Oakland Athletics jumped back into the win column on Saturday night with a 7-0 victory over the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium. The A’s scored their seven runs in the first four innings and the Angels were never able to respond.
Marcus Semien may have had his best game of the season at the plate on Saturday. The A’s shortstop went 3-for-5, hitting two home runs (8, 9), driving in four runs (43) and scoring three runs. Semien’s third hit was his 26th double of the year.
Khris Davis also joined the power show on Saturday night in Anaheim. “KD” smashed his 34th round-tripper of the season in the third inning off Angels starter Tyler Skaggs. Davis also hit an RBI-single in the fourth inning. Davis now has 92 RBIs for the year to date.
Matt Chapman had a 2-for-5 game with the bat. Chapman hit a single up the middle in the top of the first to drive Semien home from second to score the A’s first run of the game. It was Chapman’s 40th RBI of the season. Chapman scored a run in the fourth inning on Davis’ RBI single.
Stephen Piscotty went 3-for-5 with the bat and scored a run for Oakland. A’s catcher Jonathan Lucroy had a 2-for-4 game at the plate and also scored a run.
The A’s scored seven runs on 14 hits while leaving nine men on base. They went 3-for-8 with runners in scoring position. And while they picked up 14 hits, their batters struck out just seven times. More hits than strikeouts–is that allowed in an MLB game this year?
Strong starting pitching for Oakland
Edwin Jackson–who almost did not make the Major League roster–picked up his fourth win of the season in this game. He worked 7.1 innings of shutout baseball, allowing the Halos just three hits and three walks while striking out six batters. The 7.1 innings represents the deepest into a game Jackson has worked since joining the A’s. He had worked into the sixth inning six times. Jackson threw 110 pitches (65 strikes).
Jackson’s strong starting pitching effort meant that Trivino, Familia, and Treinen were able to take the night off.
Ryan Buchter worked 0.2 innings of relief in the eighth inning, striking out two batters. Emilio Pagan worked the bottom of the ninth, which got a little more exciting than the A’s would have liked. Pagan loaded up the bases with no outs but worked his way out of trouble without allowing a run to score.
The win affects the West, but not the Wild Card
The Mariners beat the Astros again on Saturday, so the A’s gained ground on Houston, but did not create any additional separation between themselves and Seattle.
Oakland has cut the Houston lead in the American League West to 3.5 games. The Astros have lost three straight games. The Astros and A’s play a three-game series next weekend in Oakland.
The A’s lead over the M’s in the Wild Card race stays steady at 1.5 games. The A’s and M’s play a three-game series Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday in Oakland.
The three-game series will wrap up on Sunday with a 1:07 pm PDT game. The A’s will send RHP Trevor Cahill to the mound (4-2, 3.12) to face the Angels’ Taylor Cole, who will start what will be a bullpen game for LAA.