Seattle scored 3 runs in the top of the 1st inning against Joe Blanton and never looked back, riding a complete game by Felix Hernandez to a 4-2 victory over the A's. Final Score: Seattle 4, Oakland 2
Wipe out the top of the first inning and...No, sorry, you can't. If before you bat, your pitcher gives up more runs than you're going to score all evening, you're going to lose. Still, hats must be tipped to Joe Blanton for finding a way to pitch 8 innings, and to keep the A's in the game, on a night where he surrendered 12 hits and did not even record a strikeout for the first six innings.
More hats have to be tipped to Felix Hernandez, whose 97 MPH fastball has late movement, and who can drop a breaking ball in for a strike seemingly at will (though in fact it was usually at Mark, or Jack). The fact is, just because you have been maddenly futile at the hands of Cliff Lee and John Danks doesn't mean you were the problem tonight. There is no shame in scoring only a couple runs off of Felix or in looking like a team that can't hit. We learned nothing tonight about how well the A's can hit. What we learned is what we feared: The kid can pitch.
What is an ongoing concern is the A's lack of crispness on defense. This team, already bereft of power and short on starting pitching experience, can ill afford to play poor defense, yet today the A's made an error in their 9th consecutive game.
So other than the pitching, the hitting, and the defense, the last 48 hours have gone pretty well. Now we have 20 hours to figure out how to beat Carlos Silva.