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Game #23: Despite Two Davis Homers, A's Fumble Their Way to Loss

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You know it's a bad night when you're just glad that only 3 of Cotton's 6 runs were earned, you didn't celebrate an early 3-0 lead, and even though Khris Davis may be leading the league in home runs, and you resist the urge to yell at him that he's wasting his life.

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

So that was fun, right? A night at the ballpark, watching a baseball game, twenty-nine hits, fifteen runs; what a great game. Oh I'm sorry. Did I not mention that I attended the 66ers game tonight, and despite being a single-A baseball game, I'm positive that the baby Angels played less frustratingly that the major league A's in tonight's contest. Very few teams can elicit a feeling of doom despite scoring three quick runs in the first inning, but congratulations, A's, you've done it. This week's highlights including ruining not one, but two, outstanding pitching performances with horrible losses, and just to top it all off, they wasted a multi-home run night by Khris Davis tonight, punctuated by 14 strikeouts to complement their three errors. It was as fun as it sounds.

I'd love to recap another 2-1 extra inning loss in as few words as possible, but sadly, the A's are making me address thirteen runs, none of which turned out very well for the green and gold. Blame the Angels; I'll never know how they are allowed to hold a night game on a getaway day; sending both teams to their hotel rooms after 5AM the next day, but regardless of the sleepless night, the A's played, well, forget single-A; try little league in this game.

And the game started out so well, too!

In the very first inning, Jaff Decker led off the game with a full-count ground-out, Matt Joyce was hit by a pitch for the A's first baserunner and Jed Lowrie singled to bring up Khris Davis, who blasted his first home run to give the A's the early 3-0 lead. I'd love to tell you they kept it longer than an inning, but I'd be totally lying.

Jharel Cotton, who was less than sharp tonight, to put it generously, started his game with a walk. In what wouldn't be the first catchers inference of the night, Stephen Vogt allowed Josh Reddick to reach first base to put two on with none out. After a harmless fly ball for the first out, Cotton balked both runners up a base. To say that Cotton was perhaps rattled by the balks and the catchers interferences all over the place might be an understatement. Frustratingly, Cotton struck out Correa for the second out, but a weird squib of an infield single brought home the Astros' first run. A single brought the second in, and a ground-rule double tied the game. After a single inning.

Shockingly, no one scored in the second inning, but doing his futile best to win the game by himself, Davis hit another home run to put the A's up 4-3 in the third. Plouffe was thrown out in the fourth trying to stretch a single into a double, and the Astros tied the game in the bottom of the inning despite a rare strikeout/throwout double-play from Cotton and Vogt. It was one of those nights; a great play would be made to get the first and second out, but the two-out single would follow to kill the A's. Did I mention that the fourth inning would produce the second catchers interference of the game on the same batter? What was up with Vogt and Reddick?

With one out in the fifth, Jed Lowrie made a rare error to put a man on, and a double put two on. Houston scored the go-ahead run on a single and the next on a sacrifice fly, leading the game now 6-4. They would add a home run by Gurriel, with Cesar Valdez pitching, to make the score 7-4, and the A's would be left with one last chance in the eighth. Lowrie singled with one out, and with two outs, an Alonso singled put two runners on. A huge shot by Ryon Healy, who has been struggling, was caught at the wall by Reddick (as it always is when you're struggling), preventing the A's comeback. And then the game opened with a bunch of singles and a double; the A's lose 9-4, and are in full free-fall, despite the imminent return of Sonny Gray and the now-returned Kendall Graveman.

The A's can't seem to put it all together in one night; they either pitch well and don't score, or as in tonight's case, they score, but can't follow up with defense and pitching, but it all adds up to a five-game losing streak. Triggs takes the mound tomorrow, trying to right the ship. We'll see you all back here at 4:05.