The Oakland A’s Elvis Andrus is all smiles after belting a top of the seventh two run homer against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Field in Arlington on Tue Aug 16, 2022 (AP News photo)
By Jerry Feitelberg
The Oakland A’s snapped their nine-game losing streak Tuesday night as they beat the Texas Rangers 5-1. The A’s had a revamped lineup as they continued to make roster changes. The A’s released veteran outfielder Stephen Piscotty.
Piscotty had been with the A’s since 2018. Piscotty had a great year with the A’s in 2018, but injuries took their toll, and he was hitting below the Mendoza line and had missed considerable playing time in 2022.
The A’s put two players on the IL on Tuesday. Pitcher Paul Blackburn was shut down for the remainder of the season with a finger injury. Blackburn was the A’s only player to make it to the All-Star team. He was 7-6 for the year.
Outfielder Ramon Laureano is on the ten-day IL with an oblique strain. The A’s brought up infielder David MacKinnon and catcher Shea Langeliers. Langeliers came over from Atlanta in the trade for Matt Olson. Langeliers is 24 years old and was hitting .283 with 19 homers and 56 RBIs in 92 games for the Triple-A Las Vegas Aviators.
J.P.Sears was making his second start since coming to the A’s from the New York Yankees. Sears went five innings and allowed four hits, no runs, three walks, and two strikeouts. The A’s bullpen allowed the Rangers just one run over the last four innings of the game to give Sears his fourth win.
The Rangers had Kohei Arihara on the mound. Arihara was making his first start of the season. The A’s scored a run in the first three innings and recorded seven hits in the first three frames.
The A’s drew first blood in the tip of the first inning. Cal Stevenson led off the game with a double. Tony Kemp bunted for a single, sending Stevenson to third. Sean Murphy popped out to short for the first out. Seth Brown, playing in right field, singled to drive in Stevenson.
Oakland made it a 2-0 game when they plated a run in the second inning. Shea Langeliers, making his Major League debut, sent the first pitch from Arihama down the left field line for a double. Langeliers advanced to third on Vimael Machin’s ground out. Jonah Bride singled to make it 2-0.
In the third, Sean Murphy launched a 454-foot blast to straightaway center field. There was no doubt that it was an actual moonshot.
The A’s brought in the big lefty, A.J.Puk to pitch the sixth. With one out, Rangers’ right-fielder Adolis Garcia singled. First Baseman Nate Low singled, sending Garcia to third. Former A’s catcher Jonah Heim reached on an infield single. Garcia scored to make it 3-1 after six complete.
The A’s put two more on the board in the seventh. Sean Murphy singled with one out. Seth Brown was retired for the second out. Former Rangers’ shortstop Elvis Andrus homered to put the A’s ahead 5-1.
The A’s bullpen shut the Rangers down the rest of the way. Domingo Acevedo, Kirby Snead, and Dany Jimenez all kept the Rangers from scoring to preserve the A’s win.
Game Notes- With the win, the A’s are 42-75. The Rangers fall to 52-64
The line score for Oakland was five runs, eleven hits, and no errors. The line for Texas was one run, nine hits, and no errors.
Sean Murphy had a home run and a single. Vimael Machin also had two hits, both singles.
The A’s outfielders recorded two assists in the game. Nate Lowe was at first base with two outs in the bottom of the fourth. Jonah Heim hit a rocket to left field that bounced off the wall into Tony Kemp’s glove.
Kemp threw the ball to Elvis Andrus. Andrus double-clutched the ball, but his throw home was on the mark as Murphy tagged Lowe on the should before he could cross the plate. The play went 7-6-2.
The Rangers loaded the bases with one out. A’s starter J.P. Sears walked three hitters and needed a big play to get out of the jam. The Rangers had the speedy Leody Taveras at third. Ezequiel Duran was at second. Sears had to face a very dangerous hitter, Marcus Semien.
He got Semien to foul out to Seth Brown in right field. Brown had a long run and had to get into position to get ready to make a throw as Taveras had tagged up and was on his way home. Brown made a great throw.
Tavares stopped halfway down the line. When he tried to get back to third, he saw Duran was almost on the base. Taveras was caught in a rundown to end the inning.
Here is the announcement from the A’s regarding the release of Stephen Piscotty.
General manager David Forst thanked Piscotty, 31, for his impact on the club dating to his arrival ahead of the 2018 season in a trade from St. Louis that brought him back close to his home in Pleasanton.
His mother, Gretchen, died in May that year from Lou Gehrig’s disease, and Piscotty helped raise awareness for ALS. Major League Baseball held its first Lou Gehrig Day last year.
He helped lead the A’s back to the playoffs in 2018 after a three-year drought with career highs of 27 home runs and 88 RBIs.
“I want to acknowledge Stephen Piscotty first and just talk a little bit about his time here, which came at a really important time for us when we made that trade at the end of 2017,” Forst said in a conference call. “I appreciate everything that Stephen gave us both on and off the field in his time here.”
The time of the game was 3:07. The attendance was 15,260.
The teams play Wednesday night again at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas. The game will start at 5:07 pm. Adam Oller (1-5, 7.26 ERA) goes for Oakland. Lefty Cole Ragans(0-1, 4.82 ERA) will pitch for the Rangers.