MLB podcast with Daniel Dullum: SF CEO Baer returns after domestic abuse suspension; Yanks-Sox slugfest in London; plus more

President and CEO Larry Baer will reportedly wield less power upon his July 2 return from suspension. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

On the MLB podcast with Daniel:

1 Larry Baer will return as Giants president/CEO but with less power

2 Yankees, Red Sox light up scoreboard in London

3 Benches clear after Cincinnati Reds Yasiel Puig hit by pitch; reliever calls him ‘stupid as f–k’

4 Fernando Rodney ties obscure save record

5 Mets apologize for putting two living players in memorial montage of 1969 Mets

Daniel Dullum does the MLB podcasts each Sunday at

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 get back into the win column by downing the Rangers 6-1

TEX score
Graphic: @NBCS

By Charlie O. Mallonee

Chris Bassitt made his 2019 season debut on the mound for the Oakland Athletics on Monday night and everything went Bassitt’s way. Bassitt worked five scoreless innings giving up just two hits while striking out seven Texas batters and walking four. That was good enough for him to earn his first win of the season.

Bassitt got some help from his friends in the Oakland bullpen. Ryan Dull who was just called up from Triple-A Las Vegas struck out two batters and allowed just one run in 1.1 innings of work in relief.

J.B. Wendelken, Joakim Soria, and Fernando Rodney combined to work 2.2 innings of scoreless relief to close out the game for Oakland to ensure the win for Bassitt.

The A’s scored first

Oakland put the first run up on the board when Stephen Piscotty hit his fourth home run of the season over the centerfield wall in the second inning.

Matt Chapman gave the A’s a 2-0 lead when he drove Josh Phegley home with a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the third inning.

The A’s added two more runs in the home half of the sixth and eighth innings to raise their final total to six runs.

The Rangers scored their only run in the top of the seventh inning.

In the spotlight

A’s (12-13)

Tex Rodney 2
Rodney in appearance #907 Photo: @Athletics
  • Stephen Piscotty had a 2-for-3 game that included a home run and three RBI. He extended his hitting streak against the Rangers to 15 games.
  • Chad Pinder went 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI in the game. Pinder is batting .354 (17-for-48) in 17 games in the month of April.
  • Fernando Rodney passed Cy Young for 24th on the all-time list of pitching appearances by taking the mound for the 907th time in his career.
  • The victory snapped a three-game losing streak for the A’s.

Texas (12-9)

  • Shin-Soo Chin has reached base safely in the first inning of the last 10 games he has been the Texas leadoff hitter.
  • Danny Santana has a hit in six of his first eight games with the Rangers since being called up from Triple-A on April 13.
  • Mike Minor (2-2) took the loss working six innings giving up four runs (all earned) off four hits including one home run. He struck out four and walked three.

Up Next

Tuesday night the Rangers will send RHP Lance Lynn (2-1, 4.44) to the hill to face off against Frankie Montas (3-1, 2.70). The first pitch is scheduled for 7:07 PM.

Blue Jays spoil Chapman Bobblehead Day with a 10-1 crushing of the A’s

Toronto final
Graphic/photo: @Athletics

By Charlie O. Mallonee

OAKLAND — Saturday was supposed to be all about Matt Chapman. The Gold Glove-winning third baseman was honored by having his image immortalized as a bobblehead and given away to eager fans who love to collect limited edition pieces. 33 members of Chapman’s family traveled from Southern California to attend the game. However, instead of a day of celebration, the game became just a very ugly 10-1 lost to the surging Toronto Blue Jays.

The player who really had the opportunity to celebrate on Saturday grew up about 90 miles away from the Oakland Coliseum and had a large contingent of family and friends in the stands. Rowdy Tellez plays first base for the Blue Jays. Tellez came into the game struggling with just a .191 batting average. When the game ended, the big man from Elk Grove had picked up his fourth home run of the season to go with a double, two runs scored and three RBI.

Tellez had a partner in crime that helped defeat the A’s in Brandon Drury. Drury also started the day hitting below the “Mendoza Line” at .147. Drury went 3-for-4 in the game with two RBI and two runs scored.

The A’s used six pitchers in the contest. The final player to take the mound for Oakland was first baseman Kendrys Morales. Yes, the A’s were waving the white flag at the point in the top of the ninth inning.

Oakland did manage to manufacture one run in the bottom of the ninth to prevent the game from being a shutout.

Bob Melvin’s Postgame Comments


  • The A’s have fallen under .500 with this loss. Their record now stands at 11-12.
  • Oakland has lost four of their last five games. They are 1-3 on this eight-game homestand.
  • This will be the first home series loss for the A’s since being swept by the Astros in June of 2018.
  • Mike Fiers was charged with the loss and falls to 2-2 for the season. He worked just 3.1 innings allowing six runs (all earned) off nine hits (2 HR). Fiers struck out four batters and walked none.
  • The A;s used a total of six pitchers who gave up 10 runs (all earned) on 15 hits to the Jays. A’s pitchers struck out 12 batters and walked just three. They did allow three home runs.
  • The A’s scattered six hits in the contest. Matt Chapman and Steven Piscotty both collected two hits off Toronto pitching.
  • The only extra base hit for the A’s came in the ninth inning. Robbie Grossman hit a double and eventually came home to score the only run for the green and gold.
  • The A’s left six men on base and were 2-for-6 with runners in scoring position.
  • Fernando Rodney pitched a 1-2-3 top of the eighth inning for Oakland. It was his 906th career pitching appearance tying him with Cy Young for 24th on the all-time list. That is pretty “heady” company.
Toronto Rodney
Fernando Rodney makes 906th appearance Photo: Charlie O. Mallonee

Blue Jays

  • The Blue Jays have now won five of their six games on this seven-game road trip.
  • They will win both series on the road.
  • The Jays’ record has improved to 10-12 for 2019.
  • Sam Gaviglio (2-0) gets credit for the win.
  • Matt Shoemaker made the start for Toronto and was pitching a fine game when he had to exit due to injury. The pitcher became involved in a rundown play of Matt Chapman between first and second in the bottom of the third inning. Shoemaker put the tag on Chapman and then fell to the ground. He left the field under his own power, but the club reported later that he was being evaluated for a left knee injury.
  • The Jays left nine men on base and went 5-for-13 with runners in scoring position.
  • Toronto hit three doubles and three home runs off A’s pitching.
  • It was a day for the Blue Jays where they could do no wrong.

There was something in the air

There were two separate incidents of fans jumping out of the stands and on to the field of play on Saturday. One occurred in the sixth inning and was ended fairly quickly.

The second incident happened in the ninth inning and the man spent a considerable amount of time running around on the infield. The trespasser thought he was about to elude security again when second base umpire and crew chief Bill Nelson grabbed him by the waist. Nelson threw the unruly fan to the ground and security took care of the rest. The big crowd of 31,140 gave Nelson a roar of approval.

The easy answer is to say it was 4/20 day, but that is too easy. The most import thing is that no player, umpire or employee was injured.

Up Next

The three-game series with Toronto wraps up on Easter Sunday. The Blue Jays will send RHP Aaron Sanchez (2-1, 2.86 ERA) to the mound while the A’s will counter with the undefeated LHP Brett Anderson (3-0, 2.63 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 1:07 PM.

A’s can’t survive a night of bullpenning and home runs; Rays win 7-5

Tampa Bay Jake Bauers
Jake Bauers hit the game-winning 3-run home run for the Rays Photo: @RaysBaseball

By Charlie O. Mallonee

If the Tampa Bay Rays were in the National League, they would be in the fight for a spot in the Wild Card game. They are not a walkover team anymore. The Rays have an 81-66 record this season. Unfortunately for the Rays and their fans, they play in the American League East where the Boston Red Sox have clinched the division with a 102-47 record to date, and the Yankees are in second place with a 91-57 record.

The Rays brought their “A game” on Saturday night as they handed the A’s their second loss on this six-game road trip 7-5. The game featured 21 hits, 4 home runs, 14 runners left on base, 15 strikeouts and 12 pitching changes over 3 hours and 19 minutes.

The loss was very costly for the A’s in their chase for the AL West crown and the home field advantage in AL Wild Card Game. The Astros beat the D-Backs 10-4 on Saturday and increased their lead over the A’s to 3.5 games. The A’s elimination number is now 11.

The A’s (90-59) had the opportunity to move within a half-game of the Yanks for the top Wild Card slot because the Bombers lost to the Blue Jays 8-7 on Saturday. Because Oakland lost, they remain 1.5 games behind New York in the second Wild Card spot.

More Bullpening
It was another bullpenning game for the A’s. Liam Hendriks was “the opener” on the mound for Oakland. He pitched one inning, allowing one hit and striking out one.

Dean Kiekhefer took over in the second inning and things did not go well for him. He gave up two runs (both earned) on three hits. The big blow came when Brandon Lowe hit a two-run homer with one on and no outs. Ryan Dull had to come in to close out the inning.

Chris Bassitt was the “featured pitcher” of the game. He worked 3.0 innings giving up one run (earned) off two hits. He struck out three Rays and walked two.

Yusmeiro Petit was the next man up. Petit gave up a run (earned) off one hit.

The brightest spot of the night for the A’s may have been the performance of reliever Fernando Rodney in the seventh inning of the game. Rodney has really struggled recently but not in this game. Rodney gave up no runs while he struck out one and walked one.

Jeurys Familia would have rather stayed in the hotel. Familia was brought in to pitch the eighth inning. He only gave up one hit, but it was a go-ahead three-run homer by Jake Bauers that ultimately proved to be the game-winning hit. Familia (8-6) was tagged with the loss.

A’s with the bat

  • Matt Chapman went 3-for-5 and hit his 23rd home run of the season in the ninth inning off Sergio Romo.
  • The other Matt (Olson) had a 2-for-3 night at the plate and he hit his 27th homer of the year in this game.
  • Marcus Semien had a 2-for-4 night including a run scored. He was also involved in an incident with the home plate umpire that eventually caused A’s manager Bob Melvin to get ejected.

Rays’ notes

Tampa Bay Kelvin Kiermeier
The Rays Kevin Kiermaier hit a key triple in the game Photo: @RaysBaseball
  • The Rays went bullpening as well on Saturday. Ryne Stanek was the opener and then Yonny Chirinos was “the featured pitcher.” He lasted 5.1 innings.
  • Andrew Kittredge (2-2) was the eventual winner of the game.
  • Bauers not only hit a home run, he recorded four RBIs in the game.
  • Brandon Lowe had two RBIs, two runs scored in addition to his home run.
  • Kevin Kiermaier hit a triple and posted two RBIs

Up next

The A’s will send RHP Mike Fiers (12-6, 3.29 ERA) to the mound to face the Rays’ RHP Diego Castillo (3-2, 3.31 ERA) in the Sunday finale at 10:10 AM PDT.

It’s the bullpen to the rescue! A’s beat the Mariners 7-5 on Friday night

Photo: @NBCSCA

By Charlie O. Mallonee

OAKLAND — The Oakland Athletics scored five runs off five hits in the bottom of the first inning to take a 5-0 lead on the Seattle Mariners. Matt Chapman hit his 22nd home run of the season off of M’s starter Mike Leake. Stephen Piscotty hit a two-run home run (19) off Leake. Matt Olson and Marcus Semien each hit an RBI double. Everyone in the Coliseum knew that this game was going into the “W” column for the A’s.

Everybody in the Coliseum knew that the game belonged to the A’s except the 25 guys in blue uniforms from Seattle. The M’s put up a run in the top of the second inning and then came back for more in the top of the fourth inning. Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz hit back-to-back home runs off A’s starter Mike Fiers who did have his best stuff on Friday night. Then, Ryon Healy–the former Athletic–hit a two-run home run to tie the game at 5-5. Everything changed.

The A’s bullpen took over for Fiers and gave their team a chance to get it together.

Chapman rounds third after hitting his 22nd HR of the year Photo: @Athletics

In the bottom of the fifth inning, Oakland retook the lead when rookie outfielder Ramon Laureano delivered a sacrifice fly that allowed Matt Olson to score the go-ahead run. The A’s then added some cushion when Jed Lowrie hit a one-out double and then scored on a Khris Davis RBI single.

The bullpen held on to that 7-5 lead to get the A’s (81-55) the win.

This critical four-game AL West series is now tied at one game apiece.

The win was awarded to Yusmeiro Petit (6-3) who relieved Fiers and was the pitcher of record when Olson scored the go-ahead run in the fifth inning. Blake Treinen picked up his 34th save of the season. Treinen now sports a 0.94 ERA.

Mike Leake (8-9) was hung with the loss for Seattle (75-60).

This is how the A’s pitching line is going to look the rest of the season
Mike Fiers only lasted 3.2 innings in his start on Friday night. A’s manager Bob Melvin certainly wants his starting pitchers to go at least five innings per start, but five innings are all that may be required from the starters for the A’s to be successful. The 2018 A’s are all about the bullpen.

In the win 7-5 win over Seattle on Friday night, Oakland used 5 relief pitchers. It was a parade of fresh arms stepping up on the rubber to deliver a devastating variety of pitches designed to stop opposing hitters in their tracks.

Yusmeiro Petit, Lou Trivino, Fernando Rodney, Jeurys Familia and Blake Treinen combined to pitch 5.1 innings of shutout baseball. They allowed the M’s just two hits while walking just two batters and striking out seven. They slammed the door on the Seattle offense to give their A’s the chance to win the game, which they did 7-5.

Every game will not feature five relievers, but you can expect to see games that feature three men out of the bullpen on a regular basis. The help that is coming with the expanded September rosters is going to be most welcome.

The standings are shaken up again
This A’s win really changed the standings in the AL West. The Astros lost, the A’s won and the M’s lost. Oakland is now just 1.5 games behind Houston for first place in the West. Seattle falls 5.5 games back of the A’s in the West and 7.0 games behind Houston.

By losing, the M’s also are now 5.5 games down to the A’s in the Wild Card race. These head-to-head division matchups are critical to a team’s standing when fighting for a post-season slot.

Food for your brain

  • Matt Chapman hit a home run and a double to give him a major league leading 22 extra-base hits in August. Those 22 extra-base hits also tied a franchise record.
  • Stephen Piscotty’s home run was just his fourth round-tripper hit in Oakland this season. He has hit 19.
  • Mike Fiers worked only 3.2 innings which was his shortest outing for the A’s.
  • Khris Davis ended a 0-for-19 streak with his RBI-single in the sixth inning.
  • The A’s are 57-0 when leading after seven innings.
  • The M’s Mike Leake has not won a game since June 23rd in Boston.
  • Nelson Cruz hit his 16th career home run at the Coliseum on Friday night which is the most among active players.
  • Dee Gordon now leads the American League with 30 stolen bases.
Ramon vs Sea
Laureano scores in the 1st inning vs Seattle Photo: @Athletics

 Up Next
The A’s and Mariners will play game three of this crucial four-game series on Saturday night at 6:05 PM PDT.

The M’s will send LHP James Paxton to the mound. Paxton is 10-5 on the season and will be making his 25th start of the year. He has a 3.68 ERA.

The A’s will counter with RHP Daniel Mengden, who was recalled from Triple-A Nashville last Monday. This is Mengden’s second tour of duty with the big club. Mengden has a 6-6 record on the year with a 4.28 ERA.

“Acquired Taste” Upsets A’s Appetite For Scoring

By Matthew Harrington

OAKLAND, Calif. – Monday night marked a pitching matchup of eerily similar pitcher profiles. Two players amid career renaissances met in a showdown that would have stolen the Sportscenter spotlight just six or seven years ago by now over a half-decade later proved to be a showdown between starters just now rediscovering the promise of their abilities. In the end the outcome was just as unexpected as the winning pitcher’s ability to find a way to win.

The Seattle Mariners (15-15) bested the Oakland Athletics in the battle of the unbeaten starters, with lanky right hander Chris Young topping fellow former All-Star Scott Kazmir on a Monday evening match-up at O.Co Coliseum. Oakland got a two run home run from Brandon Moss but M’s outfielder’s Stefan Romero’s first career long ball proved the difference-maker as Young and the Seattle bullpen held the Swinging A’s to just four hits in a 4-2 Mariners win.

“You don’t see him a lot,” said A’s manager Bob Melvin. “He’s an acquired taste. He’s unique in what he does. You look at the gun, he’s throwing 85 miles per hour throwing balls by you.”

Young (2-0, 3.03 ERA) baffled A’s hitters despite boasting a fastball that could be measured in miles per day, not hour. Young’s “heater” sat comfortably in the mid-to-low eighties on the radar gone throughout the evening, a speed that’d usually make any pro hitter’s eyes light up. Despite the shortcomings in velocity, the towering 6-foot-10 righty pitched six innings, holding the A’s (19-13) to just three hits while striking out and walking a pair each.

“It’s just different than a lot of guys you face,” said Moss of facing Young. “Obviously it looks like he’s throwing soft and the radar gun says he’s throwing soft but the way he pitches up and down makes it tough. It’s so rare that you see something like that. With that arm angle and that height it looks like he’s throwing out of the sky.”

Young did not pitch in the MLB at all during 2013 and pitched a combined 159 innings with the New York Mets and San Diego Padres since 2010. Like pitching foe Kazmir, Young appeared on the track to superstardom after earning an All-Star spot in 2007 with the Padres but had injuries derail a promising career. Young picked up the loss in the game, saw his ERA balloon from 3.12 in 2007 to 3.96 in 2008 before bloating to 5.21 in 2009. He now appears on track to becoming a valuable contributor to an MLB team after being released by the Washington Nationals earlier in the Spring.

“He’s not a guy that some team just runs out there,” echoed Moss. “He knows what he’s doing. He knows how to pitch. He knows how to get outs when he needs them. People see velocity and they want to judge people on that, but he can pitch.”

Young’s over-the-top delivery baffled Oakland batters for three and 1/3 no-hit innings to open play before shortstop Jed Lowrie broke through with his fourth-inning, no-out single. Left fielder Moss plated Lowrie with his two-run blast to right center on a belt-high 86 mph fastball, his fifth round-tripper of the season. The dinger marks the 10th all-time round-tripper against Seattle for Moss, the most he’s hit against one team.

“It was a mistake,” said Moss of the pitch he hammered over the wall. “He had thrown me one there earlier in the at-bat and I was in front of it. The more pitches I saw, the better my timing got. He’s a tough guy to face.”

Moss’ four-bagger pulled Oakland even after the Mariners capitalized early on an off-night from Kazmir (4-1, 2.64) by pushing two runs across in the first inning. Leadoff man Michael Saunders and Stefan Romero greeted the southpaw with back-to-back singles just out of reach of A’s infielders to open the game. Big offseason acquisition Robinson Cano struck out looking but designated hitter Corey Hart drove a single through the right side of the infield to bring Saunders around from second.

“That’s baseball,” said Kazmir. “I just had to focus on the stuff that I can control. With Saunders I ended up getting two strikes on him. I tried throwing him a fastball outside but it ended up being right over the middle of the plate and up and he was able to handle it. Then there was the changeup hit into the hole (by Romero). That’s something where, if maybe I pitched a little better there’d be a different outcome. After that first inning I just tried to get as deep as I could into the game.”

Romero advanced to third on the play as well, though if Craig Gentry weren’t subbing in in right field due to Josh Reddick’s ankle injury sustained Sunday in Boston, a play at the plate or third base could have been a possibility. Romero instead came around to score on Kyle Seager’s groundout for a 2-0 M’s lead with a half inning in the books. Romero also touched Kazmir for another run in the fifth, turning around a Kazmir 0-1 delivery to left field for his first homer in the Major Leagues.

“His velocity was down,” said batterymate Jaso. “He left a couple off-speed pitches in the zone. The homer was on a changeup and it was on a guy who swings and misses on changeups but location is key. When he got hurt it was just location.”

Kazmir opened the sixth inning by surrendering a 1-2 count single to Cole Gillespie, then watched him advance to second on a wild pitch to Brad Miller. The Seattle shortstop connected on the run-scoring base hit after lifting a fly ball to left field. Moss original charged the ball and appeared to have a chance to make a routine catch, but he put up a hand to his face as the ball dropped in front of him for the hit.

“As soon as it went up it went in the lights,” said Moss, primarily a first basemen by trade. “I was hoping it would come out of it but I could tell that it wasn’t going to. I tried to back up and keep it in front of me. I wanted to keep the runner from second from scoring and keep the other guy on first. I backed up and tried to get it in to (Donaldson) as quick as possible. Sometimes those plays feel worse than errors. At least when you make an error, you know it’s your fault. You can take ownership for it. When something like that happens, that’s tough. You want to make plays for your guys.”

Miller swiped second and third off Kazmir with catcher Mike Zunino at the plate, but third basemen Josh Donaldson cut a greey Miller down at the plate after he tried to score on a tapper down the line. Catcher John Jaso applied the tag for the easy out.

Seattle ran into the third out of the inning as well when Moss caught Zunino trying to go first-to-third on a Saunders single in the gap to left center. Moss atoned for his early miscue after his throw beat Zunino to the bag for the tag by Donaldson.

Kazmir departed the game after the inning, allowing four runs on eight hits with only three punchouts and a pair of walks. Kazmir also plunked Hart for the lone hit-by-pitch of the game and fired one wild pitch in a night where his best stuff and usual velocity eluded him.

“They just got to him early,” said Melvin of his veteran hurler. “They got him out of his rhythm early on. He recovered some, he battled. It probably wasn’t the best stuff we’ve seen this year. The velocity was down a little bit. You’re going to have days like that but he still kept us in the game.”

The A’s put the leadoff batter on just once all night after Donaldson singled up the middle in the bottom of the seventh, reaching base in the 27th-straight contest. The next batter Moss fell behind 0-2 before drawing the walk in a 12 pitch battle against Young. Manager Lloyd McClendon saw enough out of his starter, lifting him for lefty Charlie Furbush to face designated hitter Alberto Callaspo.

Callaspo entered play Monday night hitting .308 with runners on base. The switch-hitter also came having hit into six double plays, “good” for second in the American League. Callaspo added to that total, bouncing into the 6-4-3 twin killing.

“He hits it hard,” said Melvin of Callaspo’s grounder. “He just hit it right at the shortstop. (Callaspo) is a guy we feel good about in those situations. He’s gotten big hits for us all year. Sometimes you just square it up and hit it right at someone. It was a bit of a momentum changer.”

Pinch hitter Derek Norris walked off newly-inserted reliever Dominic Leone to keep the A’s threat. A’s manager Bob Melvin sent Reddick to the plate for Gentry, but ended up burning the outfielder’s availability after McClendon countered by calling on Joe Beimel for the lefty-lefty match-up. Melvin sent Yoenis Cespedes, another ailing Athletics outfielder, to the plate in Reddick’s stead, but the 2013 Home Run Derby champion popped out to Cano at second to end the rally.

“He was good enough to swing the bat,” said Melvin when asked after the game if he’d send a hampered Reddick to the plate. “He was good enough to potentially stay with it.”

In total, Seattle used five relievers with set-up man Yoervis Medina picking up his seventh hold and Fernando Rodney completed a 1-2-3 ninth inning for his eighth save on the campaign. Fernando Abad pitched a dominant seventh inning for Oakland and Ryan Cook pitched two innings to avoid taxing a green and gold bullpen that pitched four innings in a 3-2 extra innings win at Boston Sunday.

The A’s have now dropped three of their last four after exploding for 12 runs Wednesday to complete a sweep of the Texas Rangers. The A’s have scored just eight runs in the quartet of contests since. They’ll look to regain the scoring touch against Roenis Elias in game two of the four-game set Tuesday night. Oakland will counter with the surprise player of the season, Jesse Chavez.

“That’s just how it goes,” said Jaso. “There are ups and downs throughout the year. Maybe tomorrow we’ll come out and score ten, maybe we’ll win a 1-0 ballgame. You never know, that’s just how it works.”

Relievers stop Giants

By Jeremy KahnAugust 4, 2013
9195111_448x252Despite the fact that the usually stellar Tampa Bay Rays starting staff was unable to get the job done, the bullpen picked up the slack.Wil Myers hit a home run, and four relievers pitched four and one-thirds innings of work and were able to hold off the San Francisco Giants 4-3 at Tropicana Field.

Alex Torres went one and one-third of an inning, striking out two on his way tohis fourth win of the season.

Jake McGee pitched a perfect seventh inning, before giving way to Joel Peralta in the eighth and finally the closer, Fernando Rodney in the ninth to notch his 27th save of the season.

The Rays took the lead for good in the bottom of the sixth inning on a hit by former Stanford star Sam Fuld, as the Rays took two out of three from the defending World Champions and have won 25 out of their last 31.

Brandon Crawford drove in two runs with a triple to give the Giants 3-2 lead, but Evan Longoria pulled the Rays even with a single in the bottom of the fifth inning.

Guillermo Moscoso made his first start of the season in place of Barry Zito, who was removed from the starting staff after his last start in Philadelphia.

Moscoso went four and two-thirds innings, allowing three runs on four hits and did not fare in the decision.


Rookie with the walk-off to beat Giants

By Jeremy KahnAugust 3, 2013
wil-myersFans at Tropicana Field came to see a pitchers duel, and they were not disappointed; however it was a rookie who came up with the biggest hit.Wil Myers hit a bases loaded single with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 10th inning, as the Tampa Bay Rays defeated the San Francisco Giants 2-1.Myers’ heroics was setup by a Desmond Jennings leadoff walk against eventual losing pitcher Jean Machi, then stole second, Ben Zobrist received an intentional walk and then Evan Longoria walked on four pitches and then Myers hit the second pitch he saw from Machi into left field for the game-winner.

Brandon Crawford could have been the hero in the top of the 10th inning, but he struck out with two runners on to end the threat against Fernando Rodney.

Crawford drove in the Giants lone run of the night in the top of the third inning with a run-scoring single.

Zobrist tied up the game in the bottom of the third inning, as he grounded out to score Jose Molina.

Rays pitcher David Price pitched a great game, as he gave up one run on five hits and struck out five in nine innings of work.

Since returning from a triceps injury, Price returned to his dominant self, as in 57.1 innings of work, the lefty issued one walk, striking out 40, giving up 10 runs on 38 hits.

Price’s opponent Tim Lincecum was not too shabby either, as he went seven innings, allowing one run on six hits, walking one and striking out five.