Two out ninth inning Hit By Pitch leads to A’s 5-4 victory over the Twins

Photo/Graphic: @Athletics

by Charlie O. Mallonee

In the top of the ninth inning, the Oakland Athletics trailed the Minnesota Twins 4-3 with two outs when Mark Canha came to the plate to face Taylor Rogers. Rogers threw Canha a slider that hit the batter on the back foot to give the A’s a runner to keep the inning alive.

Ramon Laureano hit a double to left field that moved Canha into scoring position at third base. That set the table for Khris Davis who hit a line drive to the right side of the infield that deflected off the glove of first baseman Ehire Adrianza that allowed Canha and Laureano to score. The A’s took the lead 5-4.

The Twins did not go quietly into the night

The A’s brought in Liam Hendriks to close out the game in the bottom of the ninth. It was clear right from the first batter that Hendriks was not as sharp as he usually is on the mound. He had pitched on Friday night and that may have taken a toll on his effectiveness.

Hendriks ended up loading the bases with just one out. Mitch Garver came to bat and hit the first pitch from Hendriks on the ground to the shortstop Marcus Semien. Semien underhanded the ball to Profar who had plenty of time to make the throw to Olson at first to complete the double play. Just that quickly, the A’s had won the game 5-4.

A’s Spotlight

Liam Hendriks celebrates the save Photo: @Athletics
  • Blake Treinen (3-3, 4.46) was credited with the win. Treinen pitched 0.2-innings giving up one hit and walking two hitters.
  • Liam Hendriks picked up his eighth save of the season while working his way out that ninth-inning jam.
  • Starting pitcher Brett Anderson did not figure into the final decision and had to leave the game due to a blister on the left middle finger. His status is listed as day-to-day.
  • Matt Olson extended his hitting streak to 15 games which is now the longest active streak in baseball. Olson is now hitting .295 (18-for-61) with four home runs over the 15 games.
  • Ramon Laureano recorded his 29th multi-hit game and fifth consecutive contest on Saturday night. The young outfielder has hit 20 home runs this season.
  • Mark Canha hit his 16th home run of the season on Saturday night. He is now just one home run short of tying his career-high of 17 which he set last season.

Twins Notes

  •   Taylor Rogers (2-2, 1.97) was the losing pitcher. Rogers was also charged with a blown save – ouch!
  • Minnesota starting pitcher Jose Berrios worked 5.2 innings and gave up no runs, but he did not figure into the final decision.
  • This was the first loss this season for the Twins when they were leading after eight innings. They are now 53-1 when leading after eight innings.
  • The Twins have hit 181 home runs this season tying them with the Dodgers, Brewers, and Braves for the most home runs hit in the Major Leagues.
  • Miguel Sano hit his 14th home run of the season in the game, but it was just his second round-tripper at Target Field this year.
  • Nelson Cruz hit his 379th career home run on Saturday night which allowed him to pass A’s coach Matt Williams on the All-Time list.

Up Next

The A’s and Twins wrap up this four-game series on Sunday at 11:10 PM PDT. Oakland will send RHP Daniel Mengden (5-1, 4.21) to face the Twins RHP Michael Pineda (6-5, 4.38).

A’s score early and often in destroying the ChiSox 13-2 on Saturday

Canha and Olson celebrate on a day when the A’s score 13 runs Photo: @Athletics

by Charlie O. Mallonee

Oakland — The A’s continued their winning ways on Saturday as they won for the eighth time in their last 10 games dominating the Chicago White Sox (42-46) 13-2. Oakland put seven runs up on the board in the first inning. That was the first time the Athletics had done that since 2014 against the Astros.

The A’s sent 10 men to the plate in the bottom of the first inning. The big highlight of that inning was when Franklin Barreto hit a 1-1 pitch from Ross Detwiler over the wall in left field with two runners on base for a 3-run home run. It was his second round-tripper of the year. Bob Melvin said it was a “huge” hit that really put the Athletics on the winning path.

Chicago starting pitcher Dylan Covey lasted just 0.2-innings as he gave up six runs (all earned off just four hits. Covey walked two batters and struck out one. He threw 32 (20 strikes) pitches to the eight batters he faced. And of course, Covey (1-5) was charged with the loss.

The A’s never let up in the game. In the bottom of the fourth inning, Oakland (52-41) hit five consecutive base hits that resulted in four runs. With the score at 11-0, you could sense the competitive spirit of the White Sox had left the building.

Focus on the Athletics

Photo/Graphic: @Athletics
  • Chris Bassitt picked up his sixth victory of the season as he worked six scoreless innings. Bassitt allowed just four hits while walking just two and striking out six of the 24 batters he faced. This was the first time Bassitt had worked that many innings since back on June 2nd versus Houston. He wound up with a no-decision in that contest. Bob Melvin was pleased with Bassitt because he worked hard with the big lead and did not lose his focus.
  • The top four men the Oakland batting order went 9-for-16 in the game. They scored seven runs and recorded three RBI. Marcus Semien went 2-for-5 with two runs scored. Matt Chapman had a 3-for-4 day with two doubles, two runs scored and an RBI. Matt Olson was 2-for-4 with the bat while scoring three runs and adding an RBI. DH Khris Davis had a 1-for-3 game scoring two runs and driving in one run. Skipper Bob Melvin acknowledged that his top four men in the batting order are the keys to his team’s offense.
  • Blake Treinen was able to get some work in as he pitched the seventh inning. He gave up two runs off two hits. Melvin was not concerned about Treinen’s performance as it was not in the type of “high pressure” situations the reliever normally works in during games.
  • Melvin was also pleased to get Lou Trivino into the game for an inning. Trivino had not seen any game action since July 4th. He worked one scoreless inning on Saturday.
  • The A’s scored 13 runs off 13 hits and recorded 13 RBI in the game on Saturday.
  • Oakland is now 6-2 in the month of July. The A’s have won three consecutive games. They have won all three series that they played in July.
  • The A’s record is now 28-20 at home and 24-21 on the road.
  • The team is 20-15 in day games.
Franklin Barreto celebrates after A’s win Photo: @Athletics

Chicago White Sox Notes

  • Dylan Covey’s 0.2-innings was the shortest by a ChiSox pitcher since September 21, 2017, when Carson Fulmer left after just 0.1-inning pitched due to a blister.
  • White Sox catcher Zack Collins ended an 0-for-23 hitless streak when he singled in the seventh inning. Collins had not recorded a hit since hitting a home run in his first Major League at-bat. Chicago pitchers may not be thrilled to have Collins behind the dish when they are on the mound. They have a 6.50 ERA when Collins is catching.
  • Yoan Moncada ended his career-high 14-game hitting streak (23-for-57) by going 0-for-4 in the game. He was hitting .404 during the streak.
  • Outfielder Jon Jay had a 2-for-4 game with the bat and has now reached base safely in 11 of his 12 games with the Sox.

Interesting factoid of the game

Today’s announced attendance was 22,222. For a while, it felt like that might be the total number of runs that might be scored in the game.

Up Next

In the series finale on Sunday, the White Sox will send RHP Reynaldo Lopez (4-8, 6.34) to the hill to face the Athletics LHP Brett Anderson (9-5, 3.86). Anderson was victorious in his last start in Seattle on July 5th – winning that game 5-2.


A’s enjoy Saturday at the park, down the Rays 4-2

Rays Scoreboard
Scoreboard celebrates the win Photo: Charlie O. Mallonee

By Charlie O. Mallonee

OAKLAND — The A’s jumped back into the win column on Saturday as they beat the  Tampa Bay/Montreal Rays 4-2. The win upped the A’s record to 41-37 on the season and makes them 6-3 for the homestand. The loss drops the Rays to 44-33 for the year.

Mike Fiers made the start for the A’s, and he fought for six tough innings on the mound. Fiers allowed just one run (earned) off four hits. He struck out two Rays and walked three. Fiers also hit three Tampa Bay batters which put him some peril that his defense helped put down several times. For all of his efforts, Fiers wound up with a no-decision for the outing.

Ryan Buchter relieved Fiers in the seventh inning but was ineffective, and Yusmeiro Petit was brought into the contest with two out and a runner at third. Petit struck out Kevin Kiermaier to end the inning.

Petit would come back out for the top of the eighth inning. Petit made short work of the Rays as he struck out the side. He faced four hitters and struck out all four. Petit would also pick up the win to make his record 2-1 for 2019.

Liam Hendricks entered the game in the ninth to close things out for the A’s. He sat the Rays down in order to earn his first save of the season.

Focus on the A’s

Rays Bobblehead
It was Matt Olson Bobblehead Day Photo: Charlie O. Mallonee
  • Matt Chapman continued to give Oakland big hits as launched his 18th home run of the season off Yonny Chirinos in the third inning. He then hit a double (20) in the seventh that drove Josh Phegley home to score the go-ahead run in the game. It was his 43rd RBI of the season. Bob Melvin said in his postgame comments that he really intended to give Chapman the day off, but his third baseman would not have anything to do with sitting on the bench.
  • Ramon Laureano went 2-for-2 in the game and was hit twice by pitches. In fact, a total of five batters were hit pitches in the game on Saturday (Rays 3, A’s 2). Laureano also made two fine defensive plays in center field. In the top of the third inning, he caught a fly ball off the bat of Austin Meadows. Brandon Lowe was at third and thought about tagging up then heading home. Laureano gunned the ball to Beau Taylor. Lowe had to hold at third. Then in the fourth inning, Joey Wendle hit a ball into the gap in left-center field. Laureano fielded the ball while Wendle decided to stretch his single into a double. The A’s centerfielder threw Wendle out at second base.
  • The A’s moved two runners up in the game twice via the steal. One was a steal of second. The other was a steal of third base by Laureano.
  • The A’s were 2-for-11 with Runners in Scoring Position. They left eight runners on base.

Tampa Bay notes

  • The Rays did not use an “opener” in the game on Saturday. Yonny Chirinos made the start and worked 6.0-innings giving up two runs (both earned) on two hits. He struck out three and walked two. Chirinos did not figure into the decision.
  • Diego Castillo came on in relief of Chirinos. He gave up two runs off two hits. Castillo (1-6) was tagged with the loss. Castillo was also the loser on Thursday night.
  • Ji-Man Choi has hit six home runs in his last 25 games. His home run (9) on Saturday off Buchter was his first versus a left-handed pitcher this season.
  • Avisail Garcia was hit by a pitch in each of his first two plate appearances.

Injury news update from the A’s

Rays Melvin
Melvin after the 4-2 win over the Rays Photo: Charlie O. Mallonee

Manager Bob Melvin announced during his postgame press conference that closer Blake Treinen has been placed on the Injury List for a “mild shoulder issue”. More details will follow.

Up next on the schedule

The A’s will send LHP Brett Anderson (7-4, 3.68 ERA) to the mound on Sunday to close out the 10-day homestand. The Rays are going with infamous “To Be Determined”. That probably means an opener followed by a group of relievers.

Twitter: @Charlieo1320

Ranger Danger: A’s get all they can handle from Texas in 9-8 win

By Morris Phillips

What did it take for the A’s to squeeze past host Texas on Sunday and salvage a split of the two teams’ rapid fire, four-game series?

Everything they had.

The A’s saw their 8-0, fourth inning lead evaporate over the final innings, so much so they needed an afterthought, RBI single from Khris Davis in the top of the ninth inning to provide the margin of victory in a 9-8 nail biter.

“After losing the doubleheader, we were going to take a win any way we can get it,” manager Bob Melvin said. “We gave some runs back, but thank goodness we got that last out.”

Davis’ two-run homer off Rangers’ starter Drew Smyly in the third inning seemed to accomplish the intended dismissal of the Rangers, putting the A’s up 5-0 at that point. If not, the A’s three-run fourth–highlighted by Marcus Semien’s two-run double–surely did the trick, putting the A’s up 8-0.

But it didn’t. The red hot Rangers–winners of 17 of 24 coming in–wouldn’t go away.

The Rangers took advantage of the best pitching the A’s had to offer, first with a pair of runs off staff ace Frankie Montas in the fourth. Then the Rangers burned set up man Lou Trivino for three runs in the eighth, and one more off Blake Treinen in the ninth. The A’s defense didn’t help matters with a pair of errors accounting for unearned runs in the sixth and the ninth to make things dicey.

With Treinen on to nail down the last three outs, the Rangers came up with three base hits to narrow the lead to 9-7, then 9-8 when Josh Phlegley was  charged with a passed ball, allowing Nomar Mazara to race home from third. But with two on and two out, Treinen induced a fly ball out off the bat of Ronald Guzman to end in it.

“I’m glad we pulled this one out. We needed this win,” said Davis, who homered for the first time since May 13.

The four-game set took less than 48 hours to complete, and forced the teams to endure consecutive days in the grueling, North Texas sun. The Rangers pitching staff fared better than the A’s, as they got a lengthy start from Adrian Sampson on Saturday night. The A’s had to lean on all of its significant bullpen arms at least twice, which will impact their next series at the East-leading Tampa Bay Rays starting Monday.

A’s have won eight in a row after beating the Mariners 6-5 on Saturday

Matt Olson bunts for a single Photo: @NBCSBA

by Charlie O. Mallonee

Every analyst and reporter that covers the Oakland Athletics kept telling fans that their team was going to wake up and start playing up to their potential any day now. They (including this reporter) kept reminding you that the A’s started slowly last season but found their legs in June.

After a while, it began to feel like the front office, team, media, and the fans were all in the same sports bar after a game trying to convince each other that the turnaround was going to happen.

Now, the great turnaround of 2019 is underway. The A’s have won eight consecutive games. They are 8-2 in their last 10 games. Oakland has won five of their last six series. The A’s swept the series in Detroit and Cincinnati.

This is how the A’s turned their season upside down in 2018 by winning series after series at home and on the road. The 2019 A’s may be on the verge of unlocking the secret to repeating that accomplishment.

Oakland is two-hundredths of a percentage point out of second place in the AL West. Both Texas and the A’s trail the Astros by 7.5 games. The A’s are in a virtual tie for the second Wild Card spot in the American League (don’t laugh — it’s never too early to look at the Wild Card when Houston is in your division).

Fiers first home start since the no-hitter

Mike Fiers took the mound for the A’s on Saturday and did not throw a no-hitter, but he did keep his team in the game. The veteran worked six innings giving up three runs (all earned) off five hits. Fiers struck out three Mariners and walked two. He also earned the win which upped his record to 4-3.

Fiers faced 23 batters and gave up just two extra-base hits. Domingo Santana hit his 10th home run of the year off Fiers in the fourth inning and Mitch Haniger hit his 13th round-tripper off the starter in the fifth.  Jay Bruce hit his ninth double of the season off the starter. Fiers threw 89 pitches (66 strikes). He has pitched at least five innings in each of his last six starts, which dates back to April 26 in Toronto.

The A’s scored first

Chapman celebrates the 50th HR of his career Photo: @athletics

The A’s are 18-9 when they score first this season.

Matt Chapman put the A’s first run up on the board when he hit his 12th home run of the season in the bottom of the first inning off Seattle starter LHP Yusel Kikuchi with two out and the bases empty. Chapman is hitting just .229 versus left-handed pitching, but he has six home runs in 48 at-bats against southpaws.

Ramon Laureano went 2-for-3 on Saturday with a double and an RBI. Laureano extended his hitting streak to eight games (12-for-31) which is also a new career high. His double in the fifth inning tied an Oakland record. It was the fifth consecutive game in which Laureano had hit a double tying a record that has been done five times in A’s history. The last to do it before Saturday was Miguel Tejada back in 2003.

Treinen gets the save

Blake Treinen picked up his 62nd save as an Athletic (10th of 2019). The save did not come without some excitement. Treinen gave up two runs (earned) on three hits, including a home run, but he held on to get the save.


The M’s have now lost five consecutive games and are 2-8 in their last 10 games. Seattle currently is in sole possession of last place in AL West 5.0 games back of the A’s and 12.5 games behind the division-leading Astros.

Starter Yusel Kikuchi lasted just 3.1 innings, his shortest start of the season since April 26. Kikuchi gave up five runs (4 earned) off 10 hits including one home run. He struck out one and walked one batter. Kikuchi was tagged with the loss and his record now stands at 3-2.

Kyle Seager made his first appearance of 2019 since coming off the injured list — it was his first ever trip to the IL. Seager hit his 250th career double in the ninth inning of the game on Saturday.

Domingo Santana had quite a game. He went 2-for-4 on the day with both his hits being home runs. He has touched them all 11 times this season. It was his first multi-home run game of the year.

Mitch Haniger loves to face the A’s. He is batting .296 (45-for-152) including 11 home runs versus Oakland in his career. Haniger went 2-for-4 with a home run and an RBI on Saturday.

Seattle is now 0-18 when their opponent scores first this season. The Mariners have scored 147 of their 278 runs (52.9-percent) via the home run.

Up Next

The A’s and M’s will wrap up their three-game series on Sunday at 1:07 PM. Seattle will go with RHP Mike Leake (3-5, 4.73 ERA) while the Oakland will counter with LHP Brett Anderson (5-3, 4.14 ERA).

A’s make it three wins in a row over the Tigers with a 4-1 victory on Saturday

Graphic/Photo: @Athletics

By Charlie O. Mallonee

The Oakland Athletics would be very happy to play the Detroit Tigers every day for the rest of the season. On Saturday afternoon in Detroit, the A’s defeated the Tigers for the 15th consecutive time. That winning streak dates back to May 6, 2017, which means Oakland has not lost a game to Detroit in over two years. That is nothing short of incredible.

The Mustached One wants to stay in Oakland

The pitcher with the handlebar mustache — Daniel Mengden — made his second start of the season for the A’s on Saturday. He made it a quality start by working seven complete innings. Mengden allowed one run (earned) off three hits. He struck out five Detroit hitters while walking just two batters.

Mengden threw 95 pitches (62 strikes) en route to his first win of the 2019 season. This outstanding performance may have earned Mengden a regular spot in the A’s starting rotation.

Lou Trivino relieved Mengden in the eighth inning and held the lead for the starter. Trivino allowed no runs and gave up just one hit.

Blake Treinen came on in the ninth inning to close it out for Oakland. He did not allow the Tigers to score and gave up just one hit. He also struck out one batter. Treinen earned his seventh save of the season.

Graphic/Photo: @Athletics

The A’s scored first and never looked back

The Athletics put the first runs up on the board in the top of the third inning when Nick Hundley hit a home run to right field with Profar on base to give his team a 2-0 lead. Ultimately, that would be all the runs Oakland would need to win the game, but they were not done scoring for the day.

In the top the fifth inning, Jurickson Profar hit his fifth double of the year to left field that drove Robbie Grossman home to score the A’s third run of the contest.

Chad Pinder put the icing on the cake in the top of the seventh inning when he hit his fifth home run of the year to left center field to give the A’s a 4-1 lead.

The Tigers scored their only run in the fourth inning when Ronny Rodriguez scored on a wild pitch thrown by Mengden.

Boyd took the loss for the Tigers

Graphic/Photo: @Tigers

Matthew Boyd made the start for Detroit and he was hung with the loss. Boyd worked 6.1-innings giving up four runs (all earned) on seven hits. He struck out eight Oakland hitters, but he also allowed two home runs.

Boyd’s record now stands at 4-4 for the season.

Season Series Finale on Sunday

The A’s and Tigers will wrap up their 2019 season series on Sunday in Detroit. Former Tigers pitcher Mike Fiers (3-3) will take the ball for the A’s while LHP Gregory Soto (0-2) gets the call to the mound for the Tigers. First pitch is scheduled for 10:10 AM Pacific Daylight Savings Time.

A’s win second consecutive game downing Cleveland 3-2 in a walk-off on Saturday

Photo/Graphic: @Athletics

By Charlie O. Mallonee

OAKLAND — Don’t look now but the Oakland Athletics are on a roll. After beating the Cleveland Indians 3-2 on Saturday, the A’s have now won two consecutive games. They are 4-1 on this homestand versus teams from Ohio — Cleveland and Cincinnati. The A’s record at the Coliseum has improved to 14-9 for 2019.

This fact may come as a surprise to A’s fans — their team has a 5-4 record in the month of May to date. In what has seemed to be an atmosphere of gloom and doom for the A’s recently, in reality, things have actually have been going fairly well. Oakland is no longer in the cellar in the AL West and are just a 1/2 game out of third place.

The “opener” is back

Aaron Brooks works against Cleveland Photo: @Athletics

The A’s used Liam Hendricks as an “opener” on Saturday against the Indians. Hendricks pitched one scoreless inning allowing just one hit and striking out one batter. This was the first time Oakland used an “opener” in 2019 while they employed the concept nine times in 2018.

Aaron Brooks took over in the second inning and worked four innings for the A’s. He gave up one run (earned) off four hits. Brooks struck out four Cleveland hitters and walked three. He also allowed one home in the fifth inning to Leonys Martin (6).

Cleveland used just two hurlers

Trevor Bauer made the start for Cleveland and lasted for seven innings. He threw 122 pitches and struck out 10 Oakland batters. Bauer allowed two runs, but neither run was earned. Bauer did not figure into the final decision.

A.J. Cole worked the final 1.1-innings and took the loss.

Cleveland tied it up in the top of the ninth

The A’s held a 2-1 lead as Cleveland came to bat in the top of the ninth inning. Blake Treinen was summoned from the bullpen to close out the game. Well, that is not how things would go for Oakland.

Jordan Luplow led off the inning with a single to left. Mike Freeman laid down a sacrifice bunt that moved Luplow up to second base. Carlos Gonzalez came in as a pinch hitter and struck out swinging. Leonys Martin then hit a single through the hole on the left side of the infield that allowed Luplow to come home and score the tying run.

The A’s walk it off again

With the score tied 2-2, the A’s had the opportunity to end the game in the bottom of the ninth inning. With A.J. Cole on the hill, Matt Olson led off the inning with a walk. Kendrys Morales then singled to center moving Olson up to second base. Stephen Piscotty laid down a sacrifice bunt that moved Olson to third and Morales to second. Ramon Laureano then singled to right field that drove Olson home to score the winning for Oakland.

The A’s are 1-14 when going homerless in a game

Oakland entered the game 0-14 when not hitting a home run a game. The A’s broke that streak today as they beat Cleveland without the aid of a round-tripper. Houston and Seattle have not won a game without hitting a home run.

Chapman loves playing Cleveland

Matt Chapman has reached base safely in his eight career games versus Cleveland. He is batting .483 (14-for-29) with nine runs, five doubles, a triple, three home runs, four RBI, and four walks versus the Northern Ohio team.

Up Next

The three-game series will conclude on Sunday when Cleveland will send Jefry Rodriguez (0-2, 2.41 ERA) to the mound in search of a win. The A’s will call on Daniel Mengden for the first time this season. The righthanded mustached pitcher has been recalled from Triple-A Las Vegas after making six starts in the minors. The first pitch is scheduled for 1:07 PM.

A’s On The Brink?: 1-8 road trip has team in need of an immediate turnaround

By Morris Phillips

Bad? No, actually worse.

The A’s concluded a disastrous 1-8 roadtrip with a 13-inning 5-3 loss in Pittsburgh in which victory was transformed into defeat with one, powerful stroke. Sterling Marte’s three-run homer off Fernando Rodney finished a four-run rally, and erased Oakland’s comfy two-run lead at the inception of the frame.

For the A’s, it was the second, consecutive day the bullpen imploded. The team’s offense seemingly whimpered in all of nine of the trip’s losses. And at 15-21, the club is in worse shape in relation to the .500 mark than they were at any point in 2018.

“Been through some tough ones here recently. This one’s probably at the top,” said manager Bob Melvin.

Are the last-place A’s cooked? Absolutely not, but they’ll need to start playing better baseball immediately starting Tuesday night when the Reds come to the Coliseum if they want to have consecutive playoff berths on their resumes. What’s frustrating is they were playing better baseball–winning Friday, blowing a late lead Saturday, and shutting down the Pirates for 12 innings on Sunday–before adversity struck like a baby grand piano falling on a unsuspecting, Saturday morning cartoon character.

So what’s the club’s biggest issue, the reason they haven’t regained their form from 2018?

That’s easy enough. The answer is, if hasn’t been one thing, it’s been another. In Sunday’s draining, extra-inning meltdown, the lack of hitting was the culprit… at least until the incendiary nature of the pitching took over.

Frankie Montas started and was the six inning wonder he’s been all season, lowering his ERA to 2.75 in the process. Montas allowed five hits and a run, with the Pirates only damage Colin Moran’s run scoring, sacrifice fly in the second.

Four Oakland relievers followed, starting with a dominating two innings from Lou Trivino, and Melvin had his club in an advantageous spot for a breakthrough through 12 innings.

But none came. Khris Davis started in left field, but was done after one at-bat when he injured his hip making a catch against the stands in foul ground. Davis has gone three weeks with a home run, and after departing early, that streak will continue for at least two more days. When asked after the game, the slugger felt confident he wouldn’t miss any time going forward.

But with Pirates’ starter Jordan Lyles and the first four relievers that followed dealing, Davis was missed yesterday.

Ironically, regular left fielder Robbie Grossman got the A’s on the scoreboard with a run scoring single in the seventh.

A’s sweep the Rangers out of Oakland with a 6-5 win in the series finale

Rangers final
Photo/Graphic: @Athletics

By Charlie O. Mallonee

The Oakland Athletics completed a sweep of the Texas Rangers with a 6-5 win on Wednesday afternoon at the Coliseum. The victory did not come easily. The A’s had to battle the boys from Texas and finally won it in the bottom of the ninth in a walkoff.

As the A’s came to the plate in the bottom of the ninth inning, the game was tied at five runs apiece. Matt Chapman grounded out to lead off the inning. Stephen Piscotty then singled up the middle to give the A’s a baserunner. Khris Davis flied out for the second out of the inning. Piscotty moved up to second base with a steal. Chad Pinder singled to right and Piscotty was able to score the winning run for the A’s.

The A’s record improved to 14-13 with the win. The Rangers dropped to 12-11 with the loss. Blake Treinen (1-1) picked up the victory while Chris Martin (0-2) was saddled with the loss.

Seven of the 11 runs scored in the contest came via home runs. The A’s recorded two home runs. The Rangers recorded three round-trippers.

A’s key performances

  • Oakland starting pitcher Aaron Brooks gave up three earned runs in 5.0 innings of work. He tied a career-high with seven strikeouts. Brooks did not issue a base-on-balls. Unfortunately, Brooks did not figure into the final decision.
  • The A’s relievers gave up two runs which allowed the Rangers to tie the game. Soria was charged with a Blown Save after he gave up an earned run in the seventh inning.
  • Blake Treinen walked two and struck out one Ranger en route to picking up the win. He has now pitched 28.0 consecutive scoreless innings at the Coliseum dating back to July 31, 2018.
  • Marcus Semien had a 2-for-5 game that included a 3-run home run. Semien is currently batting .321 with five doubles and three home runs.
  • Stephen Piscotty has picked up a hit in each of his last six games. He is hitting .522 (12-for-23) over that stretch. Wednesday was also his 500th career game.
  • Chad Pinder’s walkoff single was his the first walkoff hit of his career. Pinder now has three consecutive multi-hit games.
Rangers Piscotty
Graphic: @Athletics

Texas stars

  • Nomar Mazara recorded the third multi-home run game of his career on Wednesday as he went yard against Brooks and Petit. Mazara now has four home on the season.
  • Logan Forsythe had a big day at the plate for Texas. He went 2-for-3 with a home run, a double and a walk.
  • Pitcher Kyle Dowdy made his first career start against the A’s and allowed three runs (all earned) on four hits in 3.0 innings on the hill.
  • Texas used four pitchers in the game.

Up Next

The A’s have Thursday off and will start a three-game series in Toronto with the Blue Jays on Friday. Vladimir Guerrero, Jr. will make his MLB debut for the Blue Jays on Friday night.

The Rangers head to Seattle for a four-game series that begins on Thursday night.

A’s leave Houston frustrated after Astros’ comeback nets 9-8 win, series sweep

By Morris Phillips

Bob Melvin was dismissive. Blake Treinen was close lipped. And the entirety of the A’s clubhouse was disappointed and frustrated.

Quite simply, winning ballgames at Houston’s Minute Maid Park occupies the highest priority for the ascendant A’s. And they didn’t do any of that this weekend. Instead, three consecutive  losses concluded with the team’s collective hands tied behind their backs as Aledmys Diaz crossed the plate with the winning run on Sunday.

The Astros simply played along, taking advantage of the A’s shortcomings in a 9-8 loss that ended on a bases-loaded walk to Jose Altuve.

Melvin didn’t say much other than the entirety of the afternoon at the ballpark was rough, virtually obscuring a patient comeback that saw the A’s overcome a three-run, first inning deficit only to establish an 8-6, eighth inning lead.

But then they blew that.

“I think the majority of the game, there was frustration. It is what it is,” manager Bob Melvin said.

Only the best pitchers get the opportunity to issue four walks in a ballgame. Relievers almost never get that opportunity, and closers don’t stick around long enough to have things go that wrong. But there was Blake Treinen–not only the A’s best pitcher, but arguably their best player–struggling in the ninth inning in a more heightened spot than normal.

Looking for a five-out save, Treinen walked Josh Reddick leading off. Then Diaz singled. His next pitch–a 97 mph sinker–was a brief reminder of what the Astros feared from Treinen. Robinson Chirinos bunted the explosive pitch with little command, allowing catcher Josh Phlegley to field it cleanly, and cut down the lead runner, Reddick, at third.

Backup designated hitter Tony Kemp hitting .211 provided Treinen an opportunity to record a critical, second out. But home plate umpire Marvin Hudson made controversial, ball calls on Treinen’s first two pitches, then again on his last to Kemp, which loaded the bases.

Afterwards, Treinen was careful to steer clear of opinions on Hudson’s calls. Little needed to be said: in 80 plus innings of work in 2018, the closer walked 21 batters.

“It’s not really acceptable to truly speak your mind on things sometimes,” Treinen said.

Treinen’s too much of cool customer to appear rattled. But with the plate-disciplined Altuve up, none of the closer’s pitches were strikes and the first two weren’t close.

With the sweep, the A’s failed to carry the momentum of a one-loss homestand, or close ground on the division-leading Mariners. Either way, the first three opportunities against the defending division champs were squandered.

“They’ve had some success and we want that success,” Phlegley said. “We really wanted to get them this series.”

The only, acceptable follow-up to such a rough series? Dominating a four-game set at Baltimore, as the Orioles lost 115 games in 2018 and are rebuilding.

On Monday, Marco Estrada will be opposed by Baltimore’s Andrew Cashner in a 4:05 pm start.