With strikeout-machine Max Scherzer starting against the strikeout-pron A’s, the expectation of this game was for the A’s to score what few runs they could and get from A.J Griffin another quality start, which has been the norm. Oakland got on the board in the first inning with a 2 out single from Brandon Moss to bring in Josh Reddick and give the A’s the 1 – 0 lead. Griffin, looking to maintain his perfect record, was facing the Tigers for the first time in his career. Unfortunately the bottom of the first got off to a bad start as leadoff hitter Austin Jackson singled on a line drive, which deflected off of Griffin and landed far enough for Jackson to reach base safely. Griffin was okay, but the next batter, Quintin Berry, followed up with a single of his own, bringing runners to 1st and 3rd and no outs. Griffin was able to limit the damage done by only giving up a sac fly to Miguel Cabrera and getting Prince Fielder and Delmon Young out to keep the game tied at 1 – 1.
The A’s wouldn’t amount anything in the top of the 2nd inning and with 1 out for the Tigers, shortstop Jhonny Peralta smacked an opposite field home run to right field to give the A’s the 2-1 lead. Griffin was able to get out of the inning without any more damage, but going into the 3rd inning, the A’s were unable to score even with Tigers starter Max Scherzer being taken out of the game with right shoulder fatigue.
Going into the bottom of the third, Griffin got Quintin Berry to ground out, but shortly after, Miguel Cabrera blasted a solo home run to left field to increase Detroit’s lead to 3 – 1. With the A’s looking to rally in the top of the 4th, Darin Downs, who replaced Max Scherzer, hit Josh Donaldson with the pitch. George Kottaras catching today, then lined a single to right field, bringing runners to 1st and 2nd with no outs.Cliff Pennington then hit a ground ball to third basemen Miguel Cabrera, who was distracted by Josh Donaldson running towards him and then stopping in order to prevent the double play, was only able to get Kottaras out at 2nd and leave runners at 1st and 3rd with 1 out. With Coco Crisp being taken out of the game due to pink eye, Chris Carter was batting, but again the A’s were unable to score as he hit a ground ball to pitcher Darin Downs, who then threw to second basemen Omar Infante for the second out, who then threw to first basemen Prince Fielder to end the inning and complete the double play.
With Coco being taken out of the game, Chris Carter stayed at first, Brandon Moss moved to right field and Josh Reddick moved to center field. Griffin gave up a walk to Omar Infante and a single to Gerald Laird, but he was able to get his first scoreless inning of the game. The A’s again were held scoreless in the top of the 5th and the Tigers hit their 3rd home run of the game, this time from Prince Fielder with Miguel Cabrera on base, increasing the Tigers lead to 5-1.
Evan Scribner, looking to give the A’s a chance to comeback was unable to do so as he right away lead off the inning by walking Jhonny Peralta. Omar INfante then hit a ground ball to Stephen Drew, who got the out at second, but made an errant throw to first, allowing Infante to reach second base with 1 out. Scribner then walked Gerald Laird and then gave up an RBI double to Austin Jackson. With runners now at first and second and no outs, Quintiin Berry then followed with a double and would increase the Tigers lead to 1 – 8. The damage had been done.
The A’s would score a run in the 7th on a long RBI single from Yoenis Cespedes to bring home Josh Reddick, who got on base with a double of his own, but that would be all they amount to. As if the game were not yet considered over, Miguel Cabrera then hit his 40th home run of the year in grand fashion off of Jesse Chavez (HAH) to bring the game to the final score of 12 – 2 Tigers.
A lot of opportunities were wasted by the A’s today, in a game that was considered very winnable after Max Scherzer left, but in the end an overall poor performance by the pitching, offense, and defense lead the A’s to their 2 loss in a row, which actually isn’t too bad when you look back and see that the A’s haven’t had back to back losses since August 17th. We do it all again tomorrow at the same time where Brett Anderson takes the mound against Justin Verlander.