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Game #65: A’s fall 2-0 in unlikely pitchers’ duel

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Chris Bassitt, who hadn’t pitched in the Majors since undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2016, was stellar in the unlikeliest of duels.

Kansas City Royals v Oakland Athletics Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

With as much bad injury luck as the team has had this year, the A’s have undeniably had incredible luck calling up minor-leaguers – veteran and not – to join the rotation.

Chris Bassitt, who hadn’t pitched in the Majors since undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2016, was no exception.

***Click here to revisit today’s game thread***

Despite a few hits in the first two innings, Bassitt was able to get in control of his curveball and cutters, and get his fastball down in the zone early in the count, and thus ended his day having only yielded one run (final line: 7.0 innings, 3 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, 6 Ks, 93 pitches).

He and Danny Duffy were probably the least expected duo in the Majors to put up a duel today – but here we are.

Danny Coulombe pitched a clean 8th for the A’s, and Kevin McCarthy did the same for the Royals (despite a Dustin Fowler pinch-hit attempt).

Yusmiero Petit took the mound in the top of the 9th to try to keep it a one-run game, setting things up for Khris Davis to lead off the bottom half. Unfortunately, he gave up a towering solo homer to Alex Gordon, putting the Royals up two. Petit has now given up runs in three of his last five appearances, including three home runs.

Someone had to make this joke:

Despite the extra run to overcome, the bottom of the ninth inning seemed promising with Davis, Matt Olson, and Matt Chapman due up, but Kelvin Herrerra (AKA the only good thing about the Royals; hello, 0.76 ERA), allowed nothing more than a Chapman single for the save.

On the hitting side, this was an incredibly frustrating game, with the bottom of the ninth only putting an exclamation point on the day.

The A’s failed to capitalize on three walks and three hits, living a seven men on base and scoring none. The team was a combined 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position.

While everyone’s bats were poor, Chad Pinder and Josh Phegley (batting 8th and 9th in the lineup), went a combined 0-for-6 for a groundout and two strikeouts each. With Matt Chapman and Stephen Piscotty on base in the 7th, the two floundering perhaps the best scoring opportunity of the game and struck out swinging back-to-back. Pinder alone was responsible for four of the runners left on base.

While Bruce Maxwell certainly deserved to be sent down, Phegley also does not appear to be Major League-ready. The A’s obviously have to find a way to get Lucroy days off, but the current options are less-than-ideal.

FINAL SCORE: Royals 2, A’s 0.

On the bright side, we get to see this guy pitch tomorrow:

Boston Red Sox v Oakland Athletics Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

But on to the important question today: did we like Dallas Braden as the color guy in Ray Fosse’s absence?

Poll

Ray Fosse or Dallas Braden in the booth?

This poll is closed

  • 49%
    Ray Fosse
    (100 votes)
  • 43%
    Dallas Braden
    (88 votes)
  • 7%
    Other (leave it in the comments)
    (16 votes)
204 votes total Vote Now

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