by Charlie O. Mallonee
No, you did not read the headline wrong. The Oakland Athletics beat the White Sox 10-2 on Saturday and have now won back-to-back games on the road in Chicago. This A’s team had won just nine game on the road this season going into the series with the Chisox. They are now 11-25 on the road after winning on Friday and Saturday. Winning on the road is key for the A’s to even their record at .500 which is the most important goal for this team right now.
This was a game of record setting first
- Three Oakland A’s rookies hit their first major league home run in this game. That had never happened in Major League history.
- Matt Olson hit his first career home run in the top of the first inning off the very tough veteran pitcher James Shields. Matt Joyce was on base so the HR was a two-run shot. Olson was not done. He hit another two-run round-tripper in the top of the seventh off Jake Petricka. Olson finished the game going 2-for-3 with four RBI and two walks.
- Rookie center fielder Jaycob Brugman stepped in the batter’s box to face Shields in the top of the second inning with one out and the bases empty. Brugman hit the ball over the wall in right center field for his first career home.
- Franklin Barreto — the A’s number one rated minor league prospect — played for the Nashville Sounds in Oklahoma City on Friday night. After the game, he was told to report to the big club in Chicago. Barreto was initially told he would not play on Saturday. That situation changed and he was inserted into the starting lineup. In the third inning Barreto hit a one out, two-run home run off James Shields for his first major league hit and home run. Barreto finished the day going 2-for-5.
- There was one more first in the game. Starting pitcher Daniel Gossett recorded the first win of his career in the contest. Gossett (1-2) pitched 6.0-innings giving up two runs (no earned runs). He struck five while walking just one White Sox batter. He threw 93 pitches — 64 strikes.
Every batter in the A’s lineup recorded a hit
The A’s pulled off a rare feat on Saturday when every player in the lineup picked up a hit. They scored 10 runs on 15 hits that included four home runs (all hit by rookies) and one double. They drew six walks. Oakland left 13 runners on base and was 2-for-13 with runners in scoring position as a team.
Catcher Bruce Maxwell who was called back to the majors when Stephen Vogt was DFA’d went 3-for-5 and scored two runs in the game. He also did another fine job in handling the pitchers in the game.
The number nine hitter — Adam Rosales — had a big day at the plate. Rosales went 2-for-5, scored two runs and had one RBI for the A’s.
Oakland relievers do their job
A trio of A’s relievers each worked one inning after Gossett was done for the day. Daniel Coulombe, John Axford and Michael Brady combined to hold the Chisox to no runs on no hits in final three frames. In fact, they did not allow a base runner in their relief efforts.
There was a negative — three Oakland errors
The A’s did commit three errors in the game. They were very fortunate that they happened in a game where they scored 10 runs and could compensate for them.
Errors were charged to Barreto (1, fielding), Rosales (6, fielding) and Healy (13, throwing).
The White Sox committed two miscues of their own on defense.
James Shields took the loss and his record drops to 1-1.
Alen Hanson had the only multi-hit game for the White Sox going 2-for-4.
Todd Frazier and manager Rick Renteria were ejected from the game in the seventh inning for arguing with the umpires after a video review went against the Sox. It was the first ejection Frazier’s career.
A’s go for the sweep on Sunday
Sonny Gray (2-3, 4.84) will take the ball for A’s on Sunday. Gray lost his last start on Wednesday when he gave up five runs on seven hits to the red hot Houston Astros.
LHP Derek Holland (5-7, 4.48) will go to the hill for the White Sox. Holland also made his last start on Wednesday and he lost that game to the Minnesota Twins. The Twins roughed him up for seven runs on nine hit in just 2.2-innings.
First pitch is scheduled for 11:10 a.m. PDT.
*Photos by Patrick Gorski of USA Today Sports