At least in this series. Two games, three runs. Two games, two losses.
Tonight was a game of lost opportunities for the A's, who failed to hold 1-0 and 2-1 leads before Ryan Langerhans ended it with a two-run homer in the bottom of the tenth.
It never should have got to that point.
Things started out well as Oakland scored a quick run in the first against Ryan Rowland-Smith courtesy of a Kurt Suzuki double and Scott Hairston single after the first two outs were recorded. Brett Anderson allowed a solo blast to Russell Branyan in the bottom of the second and things stayed that way until the later stages of the game.
Mark Ellis doubled leading off the seventh and Ryan Sweeney followed up with a single, Ellis holding at third. Cliff Pennington popped out but Adam Kennedy came through with a single to give the A's the lead. In the bottom of the eighth he helped give it right back.
Michael Wuertz relieved Anderson, who turned in another excellent outing (7 IP, 1 R, 6 H, 1 BB, 8 SO). Wuertz was victimized by a run that scored without the benefit of a hit. Franklin Gutierrez drew a one-out walk and stole second on a strikeout of pinch-hitter Ken Griffey, Jr. That proved to be a vital sequence as Jose Lopez hit a grounder to the left side that Pennington set up to field. The problem? Kennedy cut in front of him, thinking he had the play. The ball clanked off his glove and rolled back toward second. With nobody there, Gutierrez easily came around to score.
The A's would do nothing in the final two innings against David Aardsma and Mark Lowe, while Branyan gave the home crowd a little excitement with a high drive to right in the bottom of the ninth off Craig Breslow, only to come down in Sweeney's glove right against the wall. Following a Gutierrez single in the tenth, Langerhans got all of a Breslow pitch and that was that.
Tonight the A's did a better job of getting on base as they got to Rowland-Smith for 9 hits over his 6 1/3 innings, but he didn't walk anyone and struck out just one and the A's still struggled to get any more than the single runs they did. Anderson's outing was in line with what we've seen of his continued maturation as a pitcher but all he has to show for it is a no-decision.
Just another tough loss and tomorrow night the A's play to avoid the sweep.