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Games #75 and #76: You Win Some, You Lose Some

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A’s win 5 in a row before losing second game of doubleheader

MLB: Game Two-Oakland Athletics at Chicago White Sox Jim Young-USA TODAY Sports

It’s hard to be disappointed in a day in which your team scores fifteen runs and your rookie knocks out two home runs and six RBI, yet here we are. Despite utterly dominating the White Sox in Game 1 of today’s twin billing, the A’s lost the second game by two, despite having the runs there for the taking, and thus split the opening two games of the series, and the day. The first game gave the A’s a 5-game winning streak; the second game broke it, Here are the game threads and all the details:

Game Thread #1
Game Thread #2

Game One was tremendous fun today. The romp was on from the second inning as the A’s put up a 4-spot on the back of the first Franklin Barreto home run. The A’s had a little bit of help as Matt Olson reached on a one-out error (error count #1 for the White Sox) and Mark Canha walked. Stephen Piscotty singled to load the bases, and the first run of the game was brought in by a sacrifice fly by Jonathan Lucroy. With the stage set; two on, two out, Barreto came throw, crushing his second home run of the year to give the A’s the 4-0 lead.

Fun Fact:

Sean Manaea was probably luckier than his line will show. He found himself in a couple of jams during the game, but when all was said and done, he easily earned his seventh win of the season by pitching seven strong innings, allowing just five hits against seven strikeouts. He walked no one. He was backed by not only the four-run second inning, but a four-run fifth as well.

Lucroy walked to lead off the fifth inning, and with one out, Dustin Fowler singled. After the second out, the A’s mounted a little two-out rally and Jed Lowrie singled in Lucroy for the A’s fifth run. Khris Davis singled in two more runs for the A’s; the White Sox second error allowed him to get to second, and their third error put Olson on base. A wild pitch during Canha’s at-bat scored the A’s eighth run, and it was about this time I was yelling at the A’s to save some runs for the second game. Sadly, in the eighth inning of this game, instead of the first inning of the next one, singles by Canha and Lucroy put two on for a encore performance by Franklin Barrerto, who his his second three-run home run of the day. Up 11-1, the A’s would win their fifth game in a row by the final of 11-2.

Starting pitcher Chris Bassitt did not fare as well as Sean Manaea. Despite another great start by the A’s offense in the first; helped by walks to Davis and Joyce (also, welcome back, Matt!) and a RBI single by Olson, the A’s just couldn’t keep the lead in this one, as a single, double, single, single, single plated three for the White Sox in the second. The A’s eleven strikeouts did not help their cause in this one; they weren’t able to come back. A sixth-inning home run by Matt Olson brought the game to a close 3-2, but a sixth inning walk and Semien error put two on for Bassitt’s replacement Coulombe. His three straight singles allowed gave the White Sox the 5-2 lead.

The A’s only real rally was in the eighth inning, and they wasted a good one. Fowler and Semien started the inning with back-to-back singles, and Piscotty walked to load the bases. Khris Davis (heeeeeeeeeeeey!) singled in two runs to bring the A’s to 5-4. Let me set it up for you. Tying run on third, go ahead run on first and NO ONE OUT. Do the A’s tie the game? They do not. Olson lined out, Canha struck out, and Pinder grounded out. Ooof.

The A’s relievers (this time Petit) allowed another run to bring the score to 6-4, but the A’s had wasted all their magic on the eight inning and had nothing left.

And so, despite a truly good day at the ballpark, the A’s wind up splitting the day. Doubleheaders are tough to sweep.

We look to build another winning streak tomorrow at 11AM. We’ll see you here with all the action as Daniel Mengden takes the mound.