Photo credit: @Athletics
By Jerry Feitelberg
The A’s pummeled the Kansas City Royals 19-4 to start the seven-game, two-city road trip. The A’s went down in order in the first inning. They scored in every inning after the first. A’s starting pitcher Homer Bailey, who was acquired from the Royals in July, faced his old team for the first time in his career. Bailey had now faced 29 of the 30 teams in the MLB. The only team he hasn’t met is the Cincinnati Reds. He played for them for 12 years before coming to the Royals at the start of the 2019 season.
Bailey improved his season record to 12-8, He is now 5-2 in eight starts for the A’s. The Royals’ starter Brad Keller was tagged with his 14th loss of the season. The A’s put five on the board in the second inning. Keller went 1 1/3 innings and allowed five runs and three hits.
The A’s scored five runs in the second and five in the third. In the second, Mark Canha, who was named as AL Player of the Week, singled. A’s left fielder Seth Brown, making his Major League debut, singled in his first at-bat as a bi-leaguer. The big left-handed hitter from Oregon was hitting .297 with 37 homers and 104 RBIs at Triple-A Las Vegas. The 6-foot-2, 225 pound Brown was a sixth-round draft choice in 2016. Several members of his family were seen cheering him when he made his first hit. Keller walked Khris Davis to load the bases. He walked Jurickson Profar to drive in Canha with the A’s first run. Phegley walked to plate Brown and the A’s led 2-0. A’s shortstop Marcus Semien blasted a triple to deep right-center field, which cleared the bases. The A’s led 5-0. The Royals scored two in their half of the inning. With two out, Bubba Starling singled. He scored on Brett Phillips home run. The A’s led 5-2 after two.
The A’s put five more on the board in the third. Matt Olson got things going with a long single to right field. Mark Canha singled to send Olson to second. Brown singled again, and Olson scored on the play. It was Brown’s first Major League RBI. Josh Phegley reached on a swinging bunt. The ball could not be fielded cleanly by either the pitcher or the catcher. Canha scored on the play. Marcus Semien then hit his 23rd bomb of the season to make it 10-2 midway through the third inning.
The A’s added one in the fourth, and three in the fifth to make it 14-2. The Royals got one back in the fifth. In the sixth, Profar hit his 16th of the season. In the seventh, Matt Chapman blasted his 30th. The A’s continued to pour it on. They scored two more in the eighth, and Khris Davis homered in the ninth to put the A’s way ahead 19-3. Lou Trivino pitched the ninth for Oakland, and he gave up the Royals fourth run of the night. The A’s won by a score of 19-4.
Game Notes: The A’s, as mentioned above, brought up Seth Brown to help in the outfield. The A’s needed another outfielder as Stephen Piscotty was placed on the 10-day IL with a high ankle sprain. The A’s had to make room on the 40-man roster. The team designated Nick Martini for assignment. If Martini clears waivers, he can go back to the A’s Triple-A club in Las Vegas.
The A’s had a long list of hitting stars Monday night. Josh Phegley and four hits and three RBIs. Marcus Semien had a triple and a home run and drove in seven runs. It was quite a night for Marcus. Matt Olson had three hits and two ribbies. Mark Canha had three hits and extended his hitting streak to 10 games. Seth Brown had two, hits, one RBI, and he scored two runs. Khris Brown had three hits, one of which was home run, and he had two RBIs. Profar’s line was the same as Davis. Three hits, two RBI’s and a home run.
Homer Bailey went six innings and allowed eight hits and three runs. Lefty A.J. Puk pitched two scoreless innings and allowed one hit.
The A’s line score was 19 runs, 22 hits and no errors. The Royals’ line was four runs, 11 hits and no errors.
The A’s improved to 75-55. They are now in a virtual tie with the Tampa Bay Rays for the second Wild Card. They also picked up 1/2 game on the Cleveland Indians in the race for the first Wild Card. They trail the Indians by 1/2 game. The Rays play three with the Houston Astros this week. Houston can help the A’s if they can handle the Rays. The A’s, in the meantime, Oakland must not let the Royals beat them. They have three more in Kansas City this week with and then in September when the Royals visit Oakland for three starting on September 16th.
The A’s have 32 games left on the schedule. They will finish the suspended game with Detroit on September 6th when the Tigers arrive in Oakland for three. The A’s were ahead when the game was suspended.
Up Next: Game two of the four-game series will be played Tuesday night in Kansas City. Mike Fiers (12-3, 3.46 ERA) will go for Oakland, and he will be opposed by lefty Mike Montgomery (3-6, 4.99 ERA). Montgomery had a rough outing against the lowly Baltimore Orioles last week. Game time will be at 5:15 pm.