The Oakland A’s broke a four-game losing streak on Thursday, beating the Cubs by the score of 10-3. It was Oakland’s second win in seven tries so far this spring.
The game was scoreless until the 5th, when the A’s broke the seal with a small-ball run. They briefly fell behind in the bottom half, but then exploded for six runs in the 6th and never looked back.
*** Click here to revisit today’s Game Thread! ***
This game wasn’t televised and I didn’t get the chance to listen along on the radio, so here are a few top performers from the box score:
- Brett Anderson started and threw three scoreless innings, facing just two batters over the minimum and striking out three along the way. In 2018 he signed in late-March and subsequently missed most of spring training, so this time around it’s nice to see him get off to a good start right from the beginning of the Cactus League.
- Andrew Triggs sighting! The right-hander threw two innings of relief, in his second appearance of the spring after missing most of last season and then having offseason surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome. His line today: 2 ip, 1 run, 1 K, 3 hits
- Liam Hendriks threw a perfect frame and has now retired 9-of-10 batters faced this spring. Prospect Parker Dunshee also added a scoreless inning.
- Chris Bassitt threw two innings and allowed two runs, but they might not have been his fault. There was a defensive miscue behind him (ruled a hit) that led to a rally, but without it the 5th could have been a four-batter frame. More on that in the next bullet point ...
- Franklin Barreto played LF, as the team tries him around the field in different spots. According to Julian McWilliams of The Athletic: “Barreto is having a tough go at it this spring in the field. Went back on a fly ball in left but it ended up dropping right in front of him. Might have lost it in the sun.” That extra baserunner helped extend the 5th inning, and later scored as one of Bassitt’s earned runs. But hey, that’s what spring is for — Barreto is experimenting at some new positions, and it’ll take time and practice to master them.
- On the bright side, Barreto had a nice day with the bat. He got out his first two times up, but then he walked to help set up the six-run 6th and he homered in the 7th. The dinger came off Randy Rosario, a lefty who spent most of 2018 in the majors and also appeared in the playoffs. Barreto has 16 plate appearances this spring and he’s only struck out twice.
- Right after Barreto homered, Ramon Laureano followed with one of his own. Here’s a video of both homers.
Turns out we have video.— Oakland Athletics ⚾️ (@Athletics) February 28, 2019
Franklin and Ramón do in-fact have Homer-esque power (literally)#HellaSpring pic.twitter.com/qlg7qrjSs2
- The big 6th inning went like this: Dustin Fowler singled, then Barreto and Laureano walked to load it up with one out. Chris Herrmann singled, Josh Phegley singled, and Sheldon Neuse tripled, plating five total runs. Then a wild pitch brought home Neuse.
- Phegley went 3-for-4 on the day, as he competes for the righty/backup catcher spot.
- Jorge Mateo walked twice, and he’s now reached base six times in 15 trips to the plate. He’s yet to steal a base, but at least he’s getting there at all.
- Outfield prospect Skye Bolt entered the game late in LF and threw out a runner at home. It was a shallow flyout to left-center, and he got there in time to set himself properly, get his momentum in the right direction, and throw it all the way through without needing a cutoff. It was a bit offline, but up the 3B line where the catcher could still reach the runner. All around, excellent play by Bolt, who is billed as a plus defender.
Run on Skye Bolt and you're gonna get struck ⚡️#HellaSpring pic.twitter.com/GTFSzy8PGf— Oakland Athletics ⚾️ (@Athletics) March 1, 2019
The A’s try to make it two in a row tomorrow, Friday at 12:05 p.m. against the Rockies. Scott Travis will have your FanPost Game Thread/Recap. Click here to sign up here if you’d like to cover a game this spring!