I mean, you can't be serious. I can't seriously have to spend my Friday night recapping how the A's scored seven runs for a Sonny Gray start, held a five run lead in the seventh with Gray still pitching and somehow managed to lose the game by a considerable margin.
Oh, I do?
On what exactly would you like me to expound? Yay for a three-run home run by Ben Zobrist! Yay for a home run and a two-run double for the slumping Stephen Vogt! Yay for Billy Burns getting three hits and none of them leaving the infield! Yay for great base-running by Lawrie to steal a run for the A's! And it doesn't matter, does it? It really doesn't matter a bit. Because the A's 11 hits and 7 runs were wasted because, yet again, in every loss, the bullpen and the defense ruin everything. In spectacular ways. I mean, who the hell makes four errors in a game? And what kind of &%$#$%^ team makes 69 errors in 70 games? Do you know that there was more than one moment in this game where I looked around for the hidden camera? Because a team couldn't be THIS bad on their own, right? Is there money to be made in Vegas? Are they trying to lose?
The A's were up 3-0 after Zobrist's home run in the first, and 4-2 until the fifth. They tacked on one in the fifth and two in the sixth, and with a comfortable 7-2 lead, took the game into the seventh inning
While managing the A's bullpen is a lot like rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic, Bob Melvin performed probably his worst bullpen management of the season in the seventh inning, as he left in an obviously tiring Sonny Gray in the game for about four batters too long. In his defense, he didn't want anybody but Sonny Gray in the game. But he alone is responsible for Gray's outing; Gray should have given up three runs at most and instead was tagged for six. I mean, who uses a pitcher fresh off no more than a couple of rehab starts at most in the biggest situation of the game to face two Hall of Fame players? Hell, you should have brought in Scribner or Clippard. The only way the A's were winning this game was to get out of the seventh inning with a lead. And instead, their obviously gassed starting pitcher walked the first two batters he saw, gave up two more singles to score a run and load the bases, and was replaced by Mujica. Yes, seriously. I think that Evan Scribner came in to finish the inning after eight runs were allowed, but I couldn't hear anything over the sound of the barn door slamming.
O'Flaherty gave up a couple more runs for good measure, and just to ensure that the A's didn't have a five-run comeback in them.
It's not all bad. The A's had a good week overall, but it's hard to look at anything objectively after a performance like tonight in front of a big, happy crowd. We can only hope they rebound for tomorrow night.