In a game that went by faster than Tay Zonday's 15 minutes of fame, Trevor Cahill absolutely shredded the anemic KC Royals lineup en route to a complete game shutout. The A's got going immediately against a typically shaky Brian Bannister in the 1st inning -- scoring a run on 3 walks sandwiched around a Kevin Kouzmanoff hit -- and never looked back. Bannister threw a staggering 34 pitches in the first and after settling down a bit, the A's polished him again for 2 in the 4th and 2 in the 5th, with the latter couple of runs coming on a 2-run blast from Rajai Davis, who had scored the second 4th inning run (Oakland's 3rd overall) when KC third baseman Chris Getz decided that Matt Watson -- who had doubled -- was out at 2nd and that the umpire just had to hear all about it whilst Raj sprinted home alertly. This was a good game for Rajai, who also made a nice running catch to ensure he will be prominently featured on all the highlight shows this evening.
There isn't really much to say about Cahill's performance tonight.... the pictured word DOMINANT says it all, pretty much. He got into a spot of trouble once -- in the 8th -- with the Royals getting into a first-n-third situation with no one out, but a short flyball and a double play ball kept KC off the board. TC induced 5 (!!!) DPs tonight, including one on a hit-and-run liner where the runner ran right up to, who had just caught the ball.
One quick 9th inning later (which ended on a s-t-u-n-n-i-n-g DP turn by Adam Rosales), The 'Dactyl had given the Athletics their third consecutive complete game and if this continues, Bob Geren may just send the entire bullpen to Great America for "Superfluous Relievers Night," such is the emerging endurance of the starting rotation these days. Indeed, this was Cahill's first ever CG and other clubs' GMs must literally be drooling when they contemplate the young studly pitching we are showcasing on a daily basis recently. Indeed I just heard Ken Korach say that this is the first time the team has had 3 consecutive CGs since the tandem of Barry Zito, Gil Heredia and Tim Hudson accomplished the feat all the way back at the dawn of the Moneyball era in 2000.
Overall, exactly the kind of TCB game the A's needed after the tough roadtrip against those two elite teams in TX and CHI and a necessary one if they are to play any meaningful games here in August and subsequently in September... honestly, I think we'd all agree that the A's absolutely must sweep the Royals this week if the games this weekend hosting the Rangers are to be infused with any pennant-race implications. As of now we sit 8 back of the Washed Hamiltons, tied for 2nd place with the hated Santa Ana Seraphim of Sierra Madre. Whatever happens, the team's current 53-52 mark is a clear and present improvement over the record after 105 games last year, when the Athletics were a somewhat less spiffy 44-61.
Tune in tomorrow at the same Oak-time and on the same Oak-channel, when these two clubs play game 2 of the series... Danmerqury will supply you with various game threads, recaps and thoroughly obscure references to 8-minute Porcupine Tree songs in 13/4 time if you're lucky ;)
Athletics lead the series 1-0
WP: Trevor Cahill (11 - 4)
LP: Brian Bannister (7 - 11)
|6 - 0 win|
|Wed 08/04||12:35 PM PDT|