The sting of losing a game like last night is lessened with the knowledge that this series was the first in well over a month that the A’s lost, having won nine and split a tenth prior to their trip to Colorado. It is also lessened by the fact that the team didn’t lose a single game in the standings and vital, tiring relievers haven’t needed to be used, presumably meaning that they will all be available today should the A’s need to shorten the game a tad. The Rockies have similar playoff aspirations, and Coors Field is a tough environment to play in, especially as an AL team missing its DH slot in the lineup, and especially immediately following a brutal four games series in Texas played in 100 degree weather.
The A’s had their chances to win either or both of the first two games of this series, but have left a comical number of runners on base and have continually fallen one hit short of a rally against a pitching staff with a penchant for giving up their fair share of base knocks. Their pitching has, perhaps, performed worse overall than the numbers show, but given Denver’s altitude there isn’t much to do beyond shrugging and moving on.
On a sour note, as reported by Susan Slusser, Chad Pinder got in a scary traffic accident yesterday and injured his elbow. While there were fortunately no severe injuries to either Pinder or his fiancee, Pinder’s arms required stitches and he won’t be swinging a bat for a while. Franklin Barreto has been called up once more to take Pinder’s spot on the roster while he makes a hopefully speedy recovery!
Pinder’s health, along with his fiancee’s, is obviously of the utmost importance, but of course, one wonders if this injury changes how aggressive the A’s become the next few days with the trade deadline looming. With Brett Anderson turning in another uninspiring start, changes to the rotation and pitching staff could very well happen as well.
Frankie Montas is taking the mound for the A’s to try and help the A’s avoid a sweep at the hands of the Rockies. With batted balls especially volatile in Denver, and pitch movement stymied, Montas will need to reach extra deep and find the strikeout pitch that has evaded him for his entire career. Fortunately for Montas, German Marquez, pitching for the Rockies, has an ERA well over 7.00 while pitching at Coors Field, and poses as a good slump-buster for an A’s lineup that has been allergic to key hits the first two games.
Lineups are below. First pitch is at 12:10.