So you know what’s exciting? The seesaw battle between the Rangers and Angels tonight, as the Rangers finally bested the Angels 10-9. Good baseball? No. Exciting? Sure, probably! But literally watching paint dry is more exciting than the 2017 Oakland Athletics this week as they lost a nail-biter tonight 3-2. Okay, it wasn’t a nail-biter. It wasn’t even exciting. Well, maybe the first inning, as the A’s scored their two runs. If you saw that, you saw the WHOLE ENTIRE GAME! The eight subsequent innings were just giant piles and piles of zeros.
That’s not fair exactly; aside from a few rough batters, Sean Manaea looked more promising of late; he seemed to be throwing harder, even if he only struck out three batters. In fact, his start was brought to you by the number 3; three runs, three walks, three strikeouts in his nearly-seven innings. He was replaced by Hendriks, Coulombe, Dull and something called Moll, which I thought was a typo, but it turns out that Sam Moll made his Major League Debut tonight in his one batter, whom he retired. Also, it’s September; time to use the entire bullpen. Coulombe, Dull and Moll all pitched the eighth inning; each recording one out.
Three pitching changes in the eighth inning after seven innings of the A’s not scoring. Trust me; that only made the game more exciting as the boredom was spread out over three commercial breaks.
It feels like a million years ago, but this game started out with so much promise! Semien and Joyce started the one-two punch with singles in the first, and Jed Lowrie doubled one run in, while Matt Olson grounded out to score the second. Leading 2-0, the A’s seemed poised to score more. They started the third with two runners on, as well, but Khris Davis grounded into a double-play to kill that rally.
Like the A’s, Seattle did all of their scoring in a single inning; a home run, a single, a stolen base, a single, a stolen base, a hit-by-pitch, and the totally normal sacrifice fly double play, in which the sac fly scored the run, but the runner at third was thrown out; sadly after the runner at home scored. There was your difference in the game.
The A’s had one more shot in the seventh, as a one-out double by Chapman and a wild pitch led to a runner on third. Unfortunately, both Boog Powell and Marcus Semien struck out and the threat was effectively neutralized.
The A’s and Mariners play tomorrow at 6:10PM. Jharel Cotton will take the mound.