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Game #34: Dueling Hit Parade Leaves A’s Short in 4-5 Loss to Boston

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The A's fell short, giving up the win in the 11th on a Panda Pop over the right field wall despite Reddick's best effort to grab and deny. Nonetheless, A's fans have to feel good about the hit parade that punctuated almost every inning. Despite 13 hits, the A's fall 5-4.

Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports

Arriving from Seattle with only 3 wins yet 7 losses on their road trip, the A's were hopeful in changing their win-loss pattern; Bob Melvin all but guaranteed this win stating that the A's would win at home.  Melvin must be talking about tomorrow's game as the A's fell short, giving up the win in the 11th on a Panda Pop over the right field wall despite Reddick's best effort to grab and deny.  Nonetheless, A's fans have to feel good about the hit parade that punctuated almost every inning.  Despite 13 hits, the A's fall 5-4.

After what started out to be a somewhat uneventful first game in this series, this became the game of well-placed hits beginning in the third.   Billy Burns led the charge as he unexpectedly popped a two-strike bunt down the left field line in an unpredictable move and hit.  Pablo Sandoval moved in quickly to bare-hand and throw to first yet not in time.  With Burns on first, the veteran Coco Crisp dinks a fake bunt and pulls his bat back in what could be characterized as a veteran move to distract the catcher. Boston catcher Swihart is charged with a passed ball (though it was clearly a wild pitch).  Reddick then walks and Billy Butler draws first blood with a base hit RBI to right.  The A's go ahead 1-0.

In the 4th, David Ortiz hit a line drive to left center as Pedroia moved the 270 feet from first to score.  A decent throw by Marcus Semien short-hops Vogt who is unable to control the ball and place the tag.  Semien is charged with the error.  We maintain our competitive fight to own the title of "most errors on the season."

The A's answer in the bottom of the 4th as Brett Lawrie, with an opposite field line drive to right, advances Davis to 3rdIke Davis favors his left side groin/hip area and is replaced by Max Muncy at the start of the 5th.  While Semien hits into a double play, Lawrie scores to put the A's up 2-1.  Max Muncy replaces Ike Davis at first.

In the top of the 5th, Swihart, with no batting gloves, delivers a liner for a double, rubbing his right hamstring once at second.  Betts, quite the hitter and going 2 for 5 tonight, drops one in left-center off the end of his bat to score Swihart for his first of two RBI's to tie the game at 2.  Pedroia comes close to taking the lead as he hits a hard shot headed over the wall in center field just left of the 367 mark.  Coco jumps, grabs, and slams into the wall denying Pedroia a home run and maintaining the 2-2 score.

In the bottom of the 5th with an average RISP of .464, Stephen Vogt once again comes through in the clutch--scoring Billy Butler on an over-the-Victorino hit at the base of the right field wall.  A's lead 3-2

Ortiz leads off the 6th with a double but is quickly picked off at second on a Vogt throw to Sogard for an awkward tag, and an officially-denied appeal:  Sit down Papi; you're out.  The A's answered with their own bats, but failed to score in the bottom of the 6th thanks to a back-handed, snow-cone grab by Mike Napoli to deny Coco his first hit of the season.

Scott Kazmir is replaced by Scribner who leads off the 7th only to give up hits to Bogaerts, Swihart, and Betts and allow the Red Sox to advance 4-3. But the Athletics come back in the bottom of the 7th with a Reddick lead off hit followed by Billy Butler's up-the-middle hit that advances Reddick to third who then scores on Vogt's sacrifice fly to right to tie the game at 4.

Fast-forward to the 11th and Angel Castro facing Pablo Sandoval in his second major league game (the first in Seattle).  Pablo Sandoval homers over the right field wall and trots home in retro "Run DMC" style with all of his gold chains and medallions clanking and bouncing and announcing the 5-4 BoSox lead as he crossed home plate.

Unfortunately the A's were unable to produce any hits or runs with three up-three down (Burns, Crisp and Reddick) with Coco looking clearly frustrated at his 0-21 stat for 2015.