Sloppy Early Defense And Bad Baserunning Cost A's Extra Inning Game

On a day when AN played like the A's did (AN is back up now; after some SB Nation tweaking), it was a small wonder that a loss was the ultimate outcome. This was not the A's best game of the year, and I understand that it's hard to play in September for a club that is out of the race, but we deserve better than what the team gave us today. Yes, Mr. Hairston, I'm talking to you.

Truly, it was amazing that the A's got to play 13 with the way the game started out; the A's took the early 1-0 lead on a ground ball by Hairston, but Cahill allowed the tying run on his own throwing error in the bottom of the first inning. He gave up two more on a ground-rule double and another error in the second (this time by Kennedy). Cahill, who would be the first of 8 pitchers on the night, lasted only three innings, allowing the three runs.

I actually don't know what was more astonishing; the fact that the bullpen held the White Sox scoreless for nine more innings or that the A's were able to muster up only the tying run, wasting countless baserunners and scoring opportunities. Gray, Blevins, Ziegler, Wuertz, Breslow and Kirby all did their job beautifully tonight. It's a shame their efforts were wasted, and it's also a shame that thirteen innings came and went, and we never saw our best reliever. I understand keeping him for a save, but at some point, you have to end the game knowing you gave it your all. Right, Mr. Hairston?

Ryan Sweeney doubled in the A's second run in the third, and that's all they would get until an eighth-inning, two-out Hairston double (after Rajai was picked off), and a Suzuki single to send the game to extra innings, tied at three.

The A's stole 5 bases during the course of the game (bringing their season total to an eye-popping 113), but were caught stealing 3 times in the late innings (if you believe that Mark Ellis was actually out in the eleventh).

The A's best chance to win the game came in the 10th inning; a single from Rajai Davis (Rajai Watch after a 3-6 night = .307) and a single from Ryan Sweeney put the go-ahead run at third with one out. But Scott Hairston popped out for the second out, and Suzuki flied out to end the inning.

That wasn't the lowlight of Hairston's night. In the thirteenth, Hairston popped up a ball to center field, and didn't really run it out. At all. The ball was dropped by Rios, and he was barely to first base. Ironically, he didn't really make up for it on the next play; running or not, he might want to pay attention to the high popup to the first baseman that was caught while Hairston slid into second base. Not a great showing. So ugly, in fact, that Hairston was pulled for Patterson in the very next inning.

"Cutting off your nose to spite your face" is certainly apt here; after a one-out single brought up everyone's favorite A.J.; A.J. doubled over Rajai's head...and there was no backup.

Where was Patterson?

I have to quote AN here; 'cause it's the only time I laughed all game:

worldblee: What is Patterson doing?
emperor nobody: I think he may have been texting someone and failed to back up the play, hmmmm.
Flashfire: Check his Twitter account - "Hey guys I’m in the…oh s***."

Not one you want to remember, especially on a flight. A's fly to Minnesota; play Friday. I'll be here; please keep me company!

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