For all the close games the A's and Angels have played over the last few years, tonight was the rare exception. The A's blasted the hated Angels 14-2 with Emil Brown and Daric Barton leading the way with home runs and three RBIs a piece. Frank Thomas also was a home run short of the cycle. Chad Gaudin pitched through a rough strike zone and held the Angels to only two runs.
Let me get this out of the way right off the bat. Yes, Frank Thomas hit a triple in the first inning and Jack Cust had an infield hit. If that doesn't tell you that things have been breaking the A's way of late then nothing will. Thomas might've had a shot at the cycle had Bob Geren not put a pinch runner in at the bottom of the seventh when he led off with a double. The thing is, the game was actually still a game at that point because it was still 6-2 and despite Thomas' new found wheels that earned him a triple earlier in the game, I would want the extra insurance run if we can get it.
Emil Brown decided to eliminate that by starting the pain train on Chris Bootcheck, who got the check booted out of him. The A's started the Bugs Bunny style conga line going around the bases with Bootcheck. But the game was probably decided earlier. Home plate umpire Charlie Reliford had one of the most baffling strike zones I've seen in a while. And apparently Angels pitching coach Mike Butcher agreed as he got thrown out after Frank Thomas walked in the third inning. The funny thing is that Gaudin had to deal with the same weird strike zone and he worked through it. Is there ever a game when Mike Scioscia doesn't complain about something? The Angels announcers were blaming the loss on the Angels tough travel schedule about having to come home from Detroit last night late and play the A's today. Of course, no credit given to these anonymous A's. That's fine. Keep dissing this team. They love it that way.
I'm hoping Frank Thomas is now coming out of it with three hits tonight. That's his first triple since 2002 and Mulder, Hudson and Zito were still Athletics. That seems so long ago. Also, Daric Barton hits his first home run of the season and I thought the reason he did was because he was patient with the baffling strike zone. He essentially forced Garland to come in with an easy pitch right down the middle.
And finally, props to Vacafan who called Emil Brown's home run. Dude, are you getting an Emil tat or what?
This was one sweet night.