Some games really speak for themselves, and tonight Barry Zito pretty much single-handedly knocked the Texas Rangers out of the pennant race with a dazzling performance for the first 8 innings. Extra-focused after serving up 4 HRs to the Rangers on August 9th, Zito came out working quickly, efficiently, and with purpose (at least that's what it sounded like, grrr...). The result? 7 no-hit innings, and the 100th win out of...well, of who knows exactly how many in Zito's career?
Meanwhile, the A's continue to click on all cylinders--pitching, defense, and important contributions up and down the lineup. Tonight, there was Ellis' key bases-loaded at-bat in the 4th and his sparkling play to preserve the no-hitter in the 7th, and there were many signature A's moments, from the relentless ABs that made 91 pitches out of 4 innings to Swisher's second "bases-clearing double to give the A's a 9-0 lead" in the last 11 days.
But tonight's story was singular, and it ran only from Z to Z. Perhaps win #100 was just Zito's way of making sure that long after he is gone, he will not be forgotten.