Braves beat A’s 7-3 to sweep two-game series; Strider settles down A’s for 10th win of season

By Jerry Feitelberg

On a warm day at the Coliseum, the Atlanta Braves beat the A’s 7-3 to sweep the short two-game series. Atlanta won all four games played between the teams in 2022.

The A’s sent rookie Ken Waldrichuk to the hill to face the powerful Atlanta lineup. Waldichuk performed well. He allowed three runs and three hits. Unfortunately for him and the A’s, he served up two gopher balls. Vaughn Grissom hit a two-run homer in the fifth, and Dansby Swanson’s blast in the sixth ended the game for Waldichuk. The Braves Spencer Strider had a rough first inning; Strider walked three and gave up a double to Stephen Vogt. The A’s Strider settled down and allowed just one more hit before exiting the game after the sixth.

The Oakland A’s, hoping to win and split the two-game series, drew first blood in the first inning. Braves’ starter Spencer Strider (9-4, 2.67 ERA) had trouble with his command in the first inning. Strider threw 35 pitches in the inning. Strider walked A’s leadoff hitter Vimael Machin. Seth Brown lined out to center for the first out. The DH, Sean Murphy, worked Strider for a walk to put two me on with one out. Stephen Vogt, playing first base, just missed a home run. The ball hit the wall in left-center, and Machin and Murphy scored. The A’s lead 2-0 after one.

Atlanta tied the game in the top of the fifth. Waldichuk hit the leadoff hitter, Travis d’Arnaud, with a pitch. Second baseman Vaughn Grissom blasted his fifth dinger of the season over the wall in right-center-field.

In the top of the sixth, with one out, Braves’ shortstop, Dansby Swanson, homered to give the Braves the advantage 3-2. A’s manager Mark Kotsay brought in righty Tyler Cyr to pitch. Cyr retired the next two hitters. The Braves led 3-2.

Atlanta broke it open in the top of the seventh. With one out, the Braves put three straight singles by Vaughn Grissom, Michael Harris, and Marcell Ozuna to plate the Braves’ fourth run. Former A’s outfielder, Robbie Grossman, doubled to drive in two more, making it a 6-2 game. The Braves onslaught continued. Norge Ruiz replaced Kirby Snead on the mound for Oakland. Ronald Acuna greeted him with a single to put Atlanta in the driver’s seat 7-2. The Braves batted around, sending nine men to the plate and putting four runs on the board.

Seth Brown homered in the bottom of the eighth with one out. The Braves hurlers shut out the A’s after scoring two runs in the first inning. It was the third hit of the game for Oakland. For Brown, it was his 21st of the year. Oakland trails 7-3 after eight complete.

The Braves bullpen held the A’s scoreless in the ninth to secure Atlanta’s 86th win.

Game Notes- With the loss, the A’s fall to 37 games below the .500 mark. Their record is 50-87. They have 25 games left to play. The Braves needed the win to remain tied with the New York Mets for first place in the NL East. Both teams are 86-51.

The A’s line was three runs, three hits, and no errors. Atlanta’s line was seven runs, ten hits, and no errors. Ken Waldrichuk was the losing pitcher. His line was five and 1/3rd innings allowing three runs and three hits. Strider improved to 10-4. Strider’s line was six innings, two runs, and two hits. Strider stuck out nine. The Braves pitchers recorded 15 strikeouts on Wednesday.

The A’s welcome the Chicago White Sox to the Coliseum for four games starting Thursday night. Lefty J.P Sears will pitch for Oakland. The ChiSox will counter with Dylan Cease. The game will start at 6:40 pm.

The time of the game was three hours and eight minutes. Five thousand three hundred thirty-two fans watched the A’s lose for the 87th time.

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