After a terribly traumatic morning, when the opening day trip to Japan was in very real jeopardy for a few moments (finally solved by the Red Sox threatening to boycott Japan unless their coaches were paid for the trip; a nice guesture, I thought), the A's took the field against the Angels and the Cubs, with Harden making one start, and Blanton the other.
Harden was assigned the loss, but pitched very well on his 90 pitch limit; throwing 6 innings, 8 hits, 2 ER, 1BB, 4K.
Keith Foulke 'relieved' him to the tune of a Vlad grand slam. Let's keep all of THOSE out in Arizona, please. Street and Braden (who looked much better in today's outing) mopped, up, but the damage was done.
The A's scratched out a run in the bottom of the ninth, and lost 6-1.
In the other game, the offense was just as dismal until the eight inning, where the A's turned a 2-0 deficit into a 5-2 victory.
Blanton had a great line; 6 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K. Andrew Brown gave up the only runs, but picked up the win, and DiNardo and Hernandez cleaned up the eighth and ninth.
Gone are the torrid offensive fires of the first few games, and as zero upon zero started to pile up for the green and gold, in both games, I got a familiar feeling...
But the good news is that Harden made it through, even (for now!) surviving a comebacker. Cross your fingers.
Well, the Dodgers take over now (did you know that?!) and the A's are set to fly out to Japan. The trip is a go! Baseball is on the way!!