Angels down the A’s 8-3 to win the series opener

Photo credit: @Angels

By Jerry Feitelberg

The A’s dropped the opener of the four-game series to the LA Angels by a score of 8-3 at Angel Stadium on Thursday night. A’s starter Tanner Anderson had a rough outing Thursday night in Anaheim. The Angels rocked him for two runs in the second and five in the third.  Anderson went 2.2 innings and allowed eight hits, and seven runs (all earned).

Angels starter Griffin Canning went six innings and allowed three hits and two runs. Home runs by Ramon Laureano in the second and Matt Olson on the fourth were the only damage done by the A’s offense.

The Angels added a run in the sixth, and the A’s put their third run on the board in the eighth.

Anderson gave up two two-run homers to the Angels. Kole Calhoun hit his 17th in the bottom of the second to put the Angels ahead 2-1. In the bottom of the third, Shohei Ohtani hit his 10th with a man aboard to make it 4-1. The Angels scored three more before A’s manager removed Anderson from the game.

Game Notes: The A’s drop to 43-39 and the Angels improved to 42-40. The Angels have now won four in a row. The Angels have welcomed back two position players back to their lineup. Justin Upton was in left field Thursday. Upton missed over 70 games with a turf toe injury. Shortstop Andrelton Simmons was back in the lineup after missing 39 games.

The A’s missed an opportunity to pick up a game on the Houston Astros as the Astros lost to Pittsburgh 10-0 Thursday. They trail the Astros by seven games in the race for first place in the AL West. The Texas Rangers are in second place with a 2 1/2 game lead over the A’s. The Angels are in fourth place, and they trail the A’s by one game.

Time of game was two hours and 46 minutes. 40,631 fans watched the Angels win the fourth in a row.

Up Next: Game two of the four-game series will be played Friday night. Game time will be at 7:07 pm. Mike Fiers (7-3, 4.20 ERA) will go for Oakland. Fiers’ ERA is 2.51 in his last nine starts. The Angels will use an opener to start the game. Felix Pena will come in after the first or second inning. The Angels have used an opener in 10 of Pena’s 11 appearances.

The A’s line score was three runs, five hits, and no errors. The Angels’ line was eight runs, 12 hits, and no errors.

Angels rally from a 7-1 deficit to win a wild one over the A’s 10-9

Photo credit: @Angel_City_Buzz

By Jerry Feitelberg

The Oakland A’s and the Los Angeles Angels played another wild one at the Big A in Anaheim. The two teams played a nine-inning game that lasted four hours and 13 minutes.

Both teams used an “opener” to start the game. The Angels used reliever Cam Bedrosian for one inning and replaced him with Felix Pena. The A’s Joakim Soria pitched the first inning and was later replaced by Daniel Mengden. This strategy was not successful for either team Wednesday night.

Angels leadoff hitter, Tommy La Stella, homered on the second pitch from Soria to give the Angels an early 1-0 lead. The A’s roughed up Pena for four runs in the second inning. The A’s had two doubles and two singles in the inning to put them ahead. Oakland scored three more in the top of the third to lead 7-1. The A’s put together four singles and a walk to get the runs on the board. The Angels answered with four runs in the bottom of the third. La Stella single to get the rally going for LA. Mike Trout hit his 15th dinger of the year to make it 7-3. Shohei Ohtani singled, and that was followed by a double off the bat of Albert Pujols. Kole Calhoun grounded out to first to drive in Ohtani with the third run of the inning. Pujols scored on David Fletcher’s single. The A’s lead was now 7-5.

The Angels plated three runs in the bottom of the fourth to take a 8-7 lead. With one out, second baseman Luis Rengifo singled. Mengden walked La Stella to put men on at first and second. It was at this point that A’s manager decided to remove Mengden from the game. Yusmeiro Petit was brought in to pitch. Angels DH Ohtani hit his fifth big blast of the year to put the Angels ahead.

The Angels maintained the lead until the top of the eighth. The A’s scored twice for a 9-8 lead. The A’s rally started when Marcus Semien walked with one out. Matt Chapman singled. That was followed by Matt Olson’s single to drive in Semien with the tying run. Chapman went to third, but Olson was thrown out at second. Chapman scored the go-ahead run on a wild pitch. The home plate umpire called Chapman out, but the call was reversed after a review. The A’s lead didn’t last long as the Angels tied the game. A’s reliever Liam Hendriks gave up two hits and an intentional walk to load the bases. Melvin brought in lefty Ryan Buchter to face the left-handed hitter Shohei Ohtani. Buchter walked him, and the Angels knotted the score at 9-9.

Lou Trivino, who got the final out of the eighth inning, retired the first two hitters he faced in the bottom of the ninth. Brian Goodwin then singled and stole second. The next hitter, Dustin Garneau, hit a ground rule double that went over Robbie Grossman’s head and bounced over the fence to drive in Goodwin with the winning run. The Angels won 10-9.

Game Notes: The A’s drop to 30-31. The Angels are now 30-32. LA’s line score was 10 runs, 14 hits, and no errors. Oakland’s line was nine runs, 15 hits, and no errors. Lou Trivino took the loss. Hansel Robles earned the win.

A’s hitting stars were Marcus Semien with three hits and three RBI. Jurickson Profar also had three hits and two ribbies. The Angels’ Tommy La Stella had three hits, one of with was a home run. Ohtani had two hits and four RBIs.

Daniel Mengden did not have a good outing. The A’s hurler lasted just 2 1/3 innings. He allowed six hits and six runs. The Angels’ Felix Pena went 1 2/3 innings and the A’s roughed him up for eight hits and seven runs.

Up Next: The A’s and Angels play the rubber game Thursday night in Anaheim. Game time will be at 7:07 pm.

Angels outlast the A’s to win a wild one 12-7

By Jerry Feitelberg

Oakland- The Los Angeles Angels won the rubber match of the three-game series 12-7. The A’s never led in the game. They fought back from a 5-1 deficit to score two in the seventh and two in the eighth to tie the game. The Angels scored two in the ninth and Oakland came right back with two to knot it again and send the game into extra innings. The roof fell in in the eleventh when things went south for Oakland. The Angels’ first two runs in the inning came without the benefit of a hit. The Halos did have two hits in the eleventh, and that put three more on the board.

The A’s started Liam Hendriks as the “opener.” He struggled through his first and only inning of work on Wednesday. Hendriks threw over 30 pitches Tuesday night in two innings of action against the Angels. He retired the first hitter he faced. He gave up a single to Tommy LaStella and walked Shohei Ohtani and Jonathan Lucroy to load the bases. Hendriks retire Kole Calhoun for the second out. The Angels’ left-fielder, Cesar Puello, who was recalled from Salt Lake City before last night’s game, singled to right to put two on the board for LA. The Angels lead 2-0 midway through the first inning.

In the bottom of the third, with two out, A’s shortstop Marcus Semien blasted his seventh home run of the year into the seats in left field. The A’s trail 2-1 after three.

Daniel Mengden was sailing along nicely until the top of the fifth. With two out, Mengden issued a free pass to Kole Calhoun. Cesar Puello, who drove in the Angels first two runs, reached on an infield single. Brian Goodwin, playing center field in place of Mike Trout, singled to right-center-field to drive in Calhoun with the Angels third run. Mengden struck out Luis Rengifo to end the inning.

In the top of the seventh, the Angels’ Cesar Puello, who, in his first game against the A’s, has been the hitting star. With a man on first and no out, Puello slammed his first home run of the year into the left-field seats to give the Angels a 5-1 advantage. The A’s rallied to plate two runs in their half of the seventh. Justin Anderson was now pitching for Los Angeles. The first hitter he faced, Matt Olson, walked. Stephen Piscotty followed with a double to send Olson to third. Anderson plunked Mark Canha with a pitch to load the bases with no out. The next two hitters, Jurickson Profar and Ramon Laureano, each hit into a fielder’s choice and that enabled Olson and Piscotty to cross the plate. The A’s trail 5-3 after seven.

The A’s tied the game in the bottom of the eighth. Marcus Semien led off the inning with a single. The Angels’ reliever Luis Garcia retired Robbie Grossman and Matt Chapman. A’s first baseman Matt Olson, who had struck out twice and walked in his first three plate appearances, took Garcia deep with his seventh bomb of the year. The game is tied 5-5 after eight.

The Angels broke the tie in the top of the ninth. A’s closer Blake Treinen hit Kole Calhoun with a pitch. He struck out Puello for the first out. The second out was recorded on a strange play. Brian Goodwin hit a slow roller to third baseman Matt Chapman. Chapman’s throw to second was grabbed by Marcus Semien. Calhoun was safe, but he strayed off the base and was tagged out by Semien. Treinen was not able to retire Luis Rengifo for the final out. The light-hitting (.206) shortstop doubled to drive in Goodwin. Jared Walsh singled to drive in Rengifo with the Angels’ seventh run of the game. The A’s were down to their last three outs. Mark Canha led off the bottom of the ninth with his ninth of the year to make it a 7-6 game. Jurickson Profar doubled, and Ramon Laureano singled to put men on at first and third with no out. Josh Phegley, who pinch-hit for Nick Hundley in the seventh, drove it Profar with a sacrifice fly to left that tied the game at seven.

The Angels put five on the board in the top of the eleventh. Murphy’s Law was in effect as whatever could go wrong for A’s pitcher, Lou Trivino. Trivino hit a batter, walked three, one intentionally, threw a wild pitch, saw his catcher have a passed ball and have two runs score without the benefit of a hit. The Angels did have two hits later in the inning. Tommy LaStella’s single drove in the third run of the inning for the Angels. Jonathan Lucroy also singled to drive in two more to torture his former teammates. The A’s could do nothing in the bottom of the eleventh, and they lose to the Angels 12-7.

Game Notes-The time of game was four hours and thirty-six minutes. 21, 185 fans were on hand to witness a very wild and woolly affair.

The Angels improved to 26-29 while Oakland fell to 29-27. The A’s used, eight pitchers. Lou Trivino was the losing pitcher.  The Angels used six, and their reliever, Noe Ramirez, was the winning pitcher.

Ramon Laureano extended his hitting streak to 12 games. Stephen Piscotty reached safely in a career-high 25 consecutive games.

Former A’s catcher Jonathan Lucroy recorded his 1100th career hit with a single in the tenth inning.

The Angels did not play Mike Trout Wednesday is his out with a sore foot. The Angels also gave Albert Pujols the day off, too.


The line score for the Angels was 12 runs, 16 hits, and no errors. The A’s line was 7 runs, 12 hits, and two significant errors.

The A’s are off Thursday and will face the AL West Division leaders, the Houston Astros, at the Coliseum for three games starting Friday night. Mike Fiers (4-3, 5.00 ERA) will pitch for Oakland and Houston will counter with former Athletic Brad Peacock (5-2, 3.19 ERA) Game time is at 7:07 pm.





Oakland A’s podcast with Jerry Feitelberg: The streak will be one of the key highlights of this A’s season

Photo credit: @Athletics

On the A’s podcast with Jerry F:

#1 A’s take their first loss in two weeks after winning 10 straight games in two weeks. An impressive performance during those two weeks.

#2 Talk about some the stars during the streak will start with Mark Canha and all those home runs — some gamers.

#3 Talk about Stephen Piscotty. He’s been struggling at the plate the last two months. Piscotty is hitting .274, but he’s got a consistent on base percentage. Piscotty, who got on base in the fourth inninng Tuesday night, has now got on base 24 times.

#4 Fernando Rodney was designated for assignment last week. No team would pick up his $5.25 million salary. He had an ERA of 9.42.

#5 The Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani was instrumental in the Angels’ win on Tuesday night getting a lined two RBI single to help the Angels get a two-run win over the A’s 6-4.

Jerry does the Oakland A’s podcasts each week at

The Angels ninth-inning rally downs the A’s and snap the A’s 10-game win streak

By Jerry Feitelberg

The Los Angeles Angels scored two runs in the top of the ninth to topple the A’s 6-4. With the win, the Angels snapped the A’s ten-game win streak. A’s starter Frankie Montas labored through his four innings of work Tuesday night. He threw 96 pitches and walked five, one intentional. The A’s bullpen did its job as they held the Angels scoreless until the fateful ninth inning. In the ninth, A’s reliever, Joakim Soria, retired the first two hitters. He gave up a single to LaStella and was very careful pitching to Angel’s superstar Mike Trout. Trout walked, and that set the stage for Angels’ DH Shohei Ohtani.  On the first pitch to Ohtani, Soria uncorked a wild pitch to advance the runners.  Soria had two strikes on Ohtani and appeared to have struck him out. Home plate umpire, Jame Hoye, called the pitch a ball. Soria told Hoye that he thought he missed the call. Soria still had to retire Ohtani. That did not happen as Ohtani singled to drive in LaStella and Trout. The A’s failed to score in their half of the inning, and they lost 6-4.

The A’s Marcus Semien put the A’s on the board on the very first pitch in the first inning from the Angels’ starter Cam Bedrosian. Semien put a charge into the ball and sent it over the centerfield wall. Bedrosian calmed down and retired the next three hitters. The A’s lead 1-0. It was the first leadoff home run of the year for the A’s and the third in Semien’s career.

The Angels sent ten men to the plate and plated four of them. Frankie Montas struggled as he gave up three walks, one intentional, and four hits. The big blow was a double by Angels’ second baseman Tommy LaStella. The Angels lead 4-1 midway through the second inning.

The A’s put another run on the fifth inning. Centerfielder Ramon Laureano led off the inning with his sixth jack of the season to cut the deficit to two. Laureano also extended his hitting streak to 11 games. The Angels’ pitcher, Nick Tropeano regained his composure and retired the next three batters. The A’s trail 4-2 after five.

The A’s rallied to tie the game in the bottom of the sixth. Matt Chapman led off the inning with a single. Matt Olson followed with his sixth bomb of the ear to bring the A’s back from a 4-1 deficit. The game is tied 4-4 after six.

With two out and no one on in the ninth, the Angels somehow found a way to put two runs on the board. Tommy LaStella singled to get the two-out rally started. Mike Trout walked to put men on at first and second. Soria’s wild pitch advanced the runners to third, and they both scored on Shohei Ohtani’s single. Soria was ejected by the home plate umpire as he was upset with a call that would have given him a strikeout to end the inning. After viewing the replay, it did appear that the umpire did, in fact, miss the call. The Angels lead 6-4 heading into the bottom of the ninth. The A’s failed to score, and they saw their 10-game winning streak come to an end as the Angels prevail 6-4.

Game Notes and stats- Frankie Montas allowed a season-high four runs in four innings, his shortest start of the season. Lefty Wei-Chung Wang made his A’s debut with two scoreless innings and one hit.

The A’s fall to 29-26 while the Angels improve to 25-29. The line score for LA was six runs, seven hits, and no errors. The A’s line was four runs, seven hits, and no errors. The A’s hit three home runs in the game.

The rubber game will be played Wednesday afternoon at 12:37 pm. Daniel Mengden will pitch for Oakland, and the Angels have not yet determined who will start for them.

The time of game was three hours and thirty-two minutes and 13, 060 fans were on hand to watch on a cold evening at the Coliseum.




Gray’s 12 K’s Not Enough For A’s Against LeBlanc, Halos

By Matthew T.F. Harrington

OAKLAND, Calif. – Despite a dominant rebound performance from starter Sonny Gray at the O.Co Coliseum Tuesday night, the Oakland Athletics once again found their efforts to string together three consecutive wins come up short.

After dropping game two of a three game series against the 2014 American League West Champion Los Angeles Angels 2-0, the Green and Gold (86-71) still seek their first uninterrupted trio of wins since August 7-9. Wade LeBlanc pitched 5 2/3 of shutout innings for the Halos, while former Athletic Houston Street nailed down his 40th save of the season after retiring the side in order.

The Athletics loaded the bases with two outs in the eighth inning with reliever Joe Smith on the mound and two men retired, but Stephen Vogt’s fly-out derailed the Oakland rally.

“I left a small village of runners in scoring position tonight,” said Vogt. “It’s really frustrating to not get them in.”

It marked only the second time all night the home team advanced a runner past second base. In total, the A’s left eight runners on base.

“That’s baseball in a nutshell,” said Vogt. “It’s frustrating, absolutely. But just because we didn’t have offense today doesn’t mean our offense isn’t good. I think we’re still playing good baseball right now, we just didn’t get any hits when we needed them tonight.”

An Oakland loss, paired with a Kansas City Royals win in Cleveland, knots the two squads up with identical records in the chase for the top Wild Card spot and home-field advantage in the one-game playoff. Despite the result Tuesday, the A’s magic number to clinch a playoff berth drops to three games by way of a Seattle Mariners lost. Just five regular season games remain.

Gray (13-10, 3.21 ERA) recorded a career-high 12 strikeouts, including three by potential AL Most Valuable Player Mike Trout, yielding only two runs in the losing effort.

“He came in the dugout with this look in his eye,” said A’s manager Bob Melvin. “He was going to get after it. Unfortunately we didn’t give him the support. Three hits and he struck out nine of the first 12 guys. Everything was working today.”

Gray’s ability to rack up strikeouts in a hurry wasn’t lost on his teammates.

“I looked up in the fifth and he had ten punch-outs,” said Vogt. “That was a remarkable thing. He threw the ball well. We had some opportunities to score runs and we just weren’t able to come through.”

The youthful right-hander picked up eight of his first nine outs on K’s and nine of his first 12 by way of the whiff. It was the one non-strikeout that made him the hard luck loser against Los Angeles (97-61).

With runners on first and third and one out in the second inning, Gray caught Hank Conger swinging at strike three. The runner at first, Efren Navarro, took off with the pitch, drawing a throw from catcher Geovany Soto.

“There was a miscommunication on that,” said A’s manager Bob Melvin. “Aybar was coming down the line. We needed to stop the run there.”

With Erick Aybar crashing down the line from third base after the throw to second, Navarro froze between second and third base. Already dead to rights on the Soto throw, Navarro stalled long enough in a pickle for Aybar to cross the plate.

“He’s fast,” said Gray of the Angels shortstop. “He puts pressure on the defense, as you could see there. He’s a good player, he has good baseball instincts.”

The Angels added another run in the sixth inning after Gordon Beckham ripped a solo home to left field for the only earned run of the day. The long ball stood as the Angels first hit since the second inning as well as the third and final hit the visitors would collect on the evening.

Gray’s LA counterpart, starter Wade LeBlanc, managed to tame the A’s bats despite a repertoire of pitches that don’t break the 90 mph barrier. The Southpaw fired 5 2/3 innings, allowing only five hits to the Oakland hitters. The A’s didn’t manage a base runner to reach second base off LeBlanc until Josh Reddick’s doubled with one out in the fifth inning.

“He did a good job mixing his pitches,” said Vogt. “He didn’t really miss over the plate tonight. Typically, a guy like that, a junk baller, he knows how to pitch. That’s one thing about Wade LeBlanc, he knows how to pitch. He’s a really good pitcher. How you take advantage of those guys is when he makes mistakes over the plate, and he didn’t do that tonight.”

Of the five A’s hits off LeBlanc, four came counter to the lefty-vs-lefty pitcher’s advantage with Reddick (two hits), Sam Fuld and Eric Sogard all reaching base.

LeBlanc (1-1, 4.23) started the season in the minor leagues with the Angels, ultimately making his first Major League appearance at Oakland May 30th. LeBlanc pitched 6 1/3 innings of relief against the Athletics after starter Garret Richards exited with a season-ending knee injury, his longest outing to date this season.

Following his lone stint of game action, LeBlanc was claimed off waivers by the New York Yankees on June 3rd. 12 days later, after only one inning of two run work against the A’s later, the Yankees granted the 30 year old free agency. The Lake Charles, La. native returned to the Angels roster on June 17th. Since then, he has made eight appearances, including two starts before his season-best Tuesday evening outing.

Manager Mike Scioscia tabs a third-straight left-hander to pitch Wednesday afternoon’s series finale. Hector Santiago takes the mound in the rubber match. Melvin counters with a lefty of his own, sending trade deadline acquisition Jon Lester to the hill. The winner of Wednesday’s contest takes the season series with each side claiming nine wins apiece in head-to-head play.

The Cespedes Runs-and-Guns Show Snaps Angels Streak at Five

By Matthew Harrington

The Oakland Athletics emphatically avoided a sweep at the hands of their Southern California rivals by thumping the Los Angeles Angels 7-1 at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. Left fielder Yoenis Cespedes nabbed a pair of runs batted in along with an outfield assist Wednesday night and catcher Stephen Vogt continued his torrid stretch since a call-up from Triple A Sacramento earlier this month.

Vogt launched a two-run home run into the bleachers in right field with one out to chase Halos ace Jered Weaver (7-5, 3.51 ERA) with the A’s leading 4-1. Oakland (40-26) also scored three runs in the ninth inning to firmly secure the victory for starter Tommy Milone while tagging Weaver with the loss. Jed Lowrie and Coco Crisp also picked up RBIs in the contest.

Milone (4-3, 3.47) went 6 2/3 against the Halos, yielding the lone run on an RBI double off the bat of Josh Hamilton with the A’s up 1-0. Other than that he proved perfect in the stopper’s role, striking out four Angels while only walking two. Ryan Cook pitched a scoreless third of an inning and Luke Gregerson and Jim Johnson fired a shutout frame each to close out the win and snap a five-game winning streak for LA.

Third-string catcher Vogt, a Visalia, Calif. native, had the pleasure of hitting his first homer of the season in front of a crowd of friends and family. The real highlight of the night, however, came in the sixth inning after Albert Pujols ripped what appeared to be a surefire double into the corner in left field. Cespedes bobbled the ball when fielding it to allow Pujols to attempt to advance to third base. Cespedes, however, threw a bullet reminiscent of his webgem throw to home plate Tuesday night to gun down the Angels first baseman for his second assist in the three-game set.

Also adding to his defensive highlight reel was Crisp, who robbed Josh Hamilton of a second-inning homer after scaling the wall in the left-center. After a premature fireworks display exploded out of the rock pile in center, Crisp gave a discerning finger wag.

The A’s managed to wrap the series up with a 3.5 game lead over Anaheim (36-29) in the American League West standings after narrowly seeing it creep down below two games. Oakland takes an off-day Thursday before returning to O.Co Coliseum to face David Phelps and the Yankees. Sonny Gray gets the ball for the green and gold in game one.

Moss and Donaldson Knock The Halo Off The Angels, A’s Win 9-5

OAKLAND, CA - MAY 30: Brandon Moss #37 of the Oakand Athletics is congratulated by Coco Crisp #4 and Josh Donaldson #20 after Moss hit a grand slam home run in the bottom of the first inning against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Coliseum on May 30, 2014 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA – MAY 30: Brandon Moss #37 of the Oakland Athletics is congratulated by Coco Crisp #4 and Josh Donaldson #20 after Moss hit a grand slam home run in the bottom of the first inning against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Coliseum on May 30, 2014 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

By Kahlil Najar

OAKLAND – Brandon Moss hit his first grand slam of his career and Josh Donaldson launched two deep home runs in the first game of this critical home series against the Angels (30-24) and propelled the A’s (33-22) to a 9-5 victory. The A’s ran through the entire lineup in the bottom of the first inning and scored five runs to knock out Angels starter Garret Richards in only 2/3 of an inning pitched. Donaldson went 3 for 4 with four RBI and Moss went  1 for 2 with four RBI to contribute a majority of the Athletics offense tonight. On the mound, Drew Pomeranz (5-2) went 5 1/3 innings and struck out five for his fifth win of the year.

“We had good energy right out of the gate,” said Athletics head coach Bob Melvin. “It didn’t feel like it was going to be one of those nights where you’d see too many balls leave the ballpark but there were strong guys. It doesn’t surprise me when they hit homers (Donaldson, Moss).”

Tonight was Donaldson’s second ever multi-homer game of his career and Melvin said, “He’s playing really well right now, across the board. He has great focus. He knows how he’s going to get pitched and his defense comes with him.”

Moss, who ended up leaving the game early because of calf stiffness spoke on his first grand slam and said, “I’ve never come close to one. I came close-ish once last year when I flied out to the wall. It was on my mind, not that I was trying to hit one. I just thought it would be cool to do it. And it felt good, for sure.”

Putting up five runs in the first made the entire O.Co Coliseum crowd feel good especially when going up against a team like the Angels.

The A’s added to their lead in the second and third inning when Donaldson hit his first of two homers in the game to right field over the out of town scoreboard. In the third, Donaldson received his second RBI of the night when he singled home Crisp and gave the A’s a 7-0 lead after three.

The Angels won the fourth inning when Mike Trout hit his eleventh homer of the year and Howie Kendrick hit his third of the year and gave the Angels three run and brought the lead to only four runs.

However in the bottom of the fifth, Donaldson launched a line drive home run to center field off of a two seam fastball that catapulted the A’s to 9 runs to the Angels 3.

The Angels C.J. Cron doubled in a pair of runs in the bottom of the sixth but then the A’s relief squad of Otero, Gregerson and Dolittle came in for 3 2/3 scoreless innings and gave the A’s their 33rd win of the year.

The Angels send Tyler Skaggs (4-2, 3.97 ERA) to the mound against Tommy Milone (3-3, 3.50) who is 3-0 and has an ERA a little over one in his last four starts.


A’s On Wrong Side in Extra Innings for First Time in 2014

By Matthew Harrington

For the first time in 2014, the Oakland Athletics ended up on the wrong side of an extra innings affair. The A’s suffered a walk-off loss 5-4 against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium Wednesday night in their fourth game requiring more than nine innings this season. Despite a 4-1 lead on a three-run home run from right fielder Brandon Moss and a two earned run performance over six-plus innings from starter Tommy Milone, the A’s bullpen failed to hang on to the lead. The Angels comeback, capped by Chris Iannetta’s game-winning blast off Drew Pomeranz in the bottom of the 12th inning, rallied the Halos (7-8)to avoid a sweep at the hands of the Athletics.

Oakland (10-5) appeared to have the game wrapped up after taking a 4-1 lead in the top of the fourth inning on Moss’ second long ball of the season. The left-hander’s no-doubter to right  off Angels starter Tyler Skaggs plated Alberto Callaspo and Derek Norris with two outs in the inning. For Moss, who hit out of the eighth spot against the lefty Skaggs instead of his usual spot in the heart of the order, the dinger marked RBI’s number 13, 14 and 15 of the season, tops on the Athletics and the best mark in the American League. Moss matches fellow AL-er Chris Colabello of the Twins for third place in the major leagues.

Earlier in the top of the fourth inning, Callaspo doubled home Josh Donaldson for a one-out, game-tying double. Callaspo finished the night 1-for-4 after entering play flirting with a .400 batting average, good for the second best mark in the American League behind Chicago’s Alexei Ramirez.

In the previous half inning, the Angels opened the scoring after Erick Aybar lead off the inning with a single to center then scored on Mike Trout’s double with one out.

Milone opened the seventh inning by hitting Iannetta with a pitch that bounced in the dirt before skimming the LA backstop’s toe. After A’s manager Bob Melvin challenged the play, replay evidence proved inconclusive with crew chief Chris Segal rewarding Iannetta first base. The next batter, Collin Cowgill, singled on the first delivery from Millone, prompting Melvin to lift the left-hander in favor of reliever Dan Otero. Milone finished the night with only one strikeout and two free passes in six-plus innings of work.

Otero coaxed Aybar to ground into a fielder’s choice with second baseman Eric Sogard electing to force Cowgill out at second. J.B. Shuck reached base on an error by Callaspo, making just his second career appearance at first base, allowing Iannetta to cross the plate for a 4-2 A’s lead. Otero downed Trout on a full-count swing-and-miss but Albert Pujols wrapped a single up the middle to cut the A’s advantage to one run at 4-3 after Aybar came around to score. Pujols’ base knock was the only Angels base hit in 13 at-bats with runners in scoring position Wednesday evening.

After the A’s went down in order in the top half of the eighth, Otero, Fernando Abad and Ryan Cook combined to pitch a scoreless bottom half. Angels reliever Fernando Salas pitched his first of two scoreless innings to keep the home team down by one entering the ninth.

Luke Gregerson, Melvin’s top candidate in the closer-by-committee approach adopted by the A’s amidst deposed closer Jim Johnson’s struggles, entered the ninth seeking his third save in four opportunities. Instead, the righty blew his second save of the season, allowing back-to-back singles to Trout and Pujols. Gregerson then yielded a run-scoring force out on a failed game-ending double play chance after Howie Kendrick beat out Eric Sogard’s pivot to first to knot the game at four runs apiece.

Angels relief arms Michael Kohn and Yoslan Herrera held Oakland scoreless in an inning each to set up Joe Smith as the winning pitcher in the 12th. Smith (1-0, 5.14 Era) struck out Gentry to open the inning, then plunked shortstop Jed Lowrie with a wild pitch to put the go-ahead run on first. Donaldson, the hero in Tuesday night’s 11 inning A’s win, advanced Lowrie into scoring position but clean-up hitter Yoenis Cespedes struck out to end the inning and the scoring threat. The left fielder went 0-for-6 on the night to join Nick Punto and Sogard as the only members of the A’s starting line-up to be held hitless.

With the A’s bullpen pitching 7 1/3 innings in Tuesday’s barn burner, Melvin used Gregerson to pitch the tenth as well before handing the ball over to lefty Drew Pomeranz in the 11th. Pomeranz (1-1, 2.16 ERA), a starter-turned-reliever, pitched 2 and 2/3 innings Tuesday night before taking the hill in Wednesday’s game. Pomeranz allowed a Pujols single in an otherwise uneventful 11th inning then stayed in the game looking to hold the Halos off the board in the 12th.

Pomeranz started the 12th on strong footing, inducing a David Freese ground out and a Raul Ibanez pop out to retire the first two men to the plate on only eight pitches in the inning. Iannetta ended Pomeranz’s run on the first pitch he saw, rocketing a 91 mph fastball at the belt to center field just right of the 396-foot marker. Center fielder Craig Gentry leapt at the wall to try to pull the game-winning shot back in from the brink, but the ball grazed off the glove’s tip and into the grass at the base of the rock pile in beyond the fence.

For the Angels, Wednesday’s win helped to skew the numbers in their favor at their home turf. In the last 22 meetings at Angel Stadium, the A’s have been victorious a lop-sided 15 times. Oakland wrapped up a nine-game road trip, going 7-2 after sweeping Minnesota and taking two-of-three from Seattle and Los Angeles.

Oakland gets an off-day Thursday to travel home before opening a weekend series at the O.Co Coliseum against the Houston Astros who, after a hot start, once again find themselves in the American League’s basement in the standings. They’ll counter A’s Ace Sonny Gray with Zach Cosart in Friday’s series-opener.

The Angels trounce the A’s

By Jerry Feitelberg

It was just one of those nights. The Los Angeles Angels pounded the A’s 12-1. The Angels snapped the A’s five game winning streak behind C.J. Wilson’s pitching. Wilson is at the top of his game as he has now 9-0 in his last 13 starts and is 13-1 since June 14th. He won his seventeenth game of the year going seven innings allowing just one run and giving up just four hits. The Angels supported his effort as they scored twelve times and banged out fifteen hits including two monster home runs.

The A’s Jarrod Parker saw his streak of nineteen consecutive starts without a loss come to an end. Parker’s record is now 11-7. There were no bright spots for the A’s in the game. The only good news was that the Texas Rangers lost and the A’s magic number to clinch the AL West title is now at seven.

Any combination of A’s wins and/or Texas losses will give the A’s the crown for the second year in a row. The game summary follows.

Jarrod Parker got off to a rough start in the first inning. He walked the leadoff hitter on four straight balls. He retired the next two hitters but gave up a single to Josh Hamilton, a double to Mark Trumbo and a another single  to rookie Kole Calhoun that allowed the Angels to get an early 2-0 lead.

The Angels picked up an unearned run in the third inning. With one out and one on, Josh Hamilton hit a sharp line drive to Alberto Callaspo. Callaspo took his eye off the ball and it bounced into center  to put men on at first and third with one out.  The Angels scored on the next play when Mark Trumbo hit into a fielder’s choice that allowed the runner from third to score. Angels lead 3-0.

The Angels sent Parker to the showers in the top of fifth. The Angels scored three runs as Parker gave up four hits and walked a batter before Bob Melvin brought in Jerry Blevins to pitch. Angels now lead 6-0 with men on at first and second with one out. Blevins retired the first batter he faced but the Angels banged out two more hits and scored two more runs before Blevins got the final out of the inning.

The Angels sent ten men to the plate and scored five runs on six hits.  Parker allowed eight runs(one unearned) as he exited the game after just 4 1/3rd inning of work.

The A’s scored a run in the bottom of the sixth. Wilson walked  Josh Donaldson with one out. That was followed by two singles and the A’s now trail 8-1.

The Angels continue to pour it on. They had two two-run home runs in the eighth to make it a 12-1 game. Mike Trout and Mark Trumbo each homered in the inning. Trout’s blast was unbelievable  as it was perhaps the longest home run hit this year at the Coliseum.

Game notes- The A’s still have the second best record in the American league. They are 88-62 and still maintain a six and a half game lead of the Rangers. Sonny Gray will pitch for the A’s Tuesday night and Garrett Richard will go for the Angels. Game time is at 7pm.

Sean Doolittle has been named a finalist for the 2013 Roberto Clemente Award.

Attendance was 14,621.