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Game #8: Soft Tossing and A Solo Shot

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

Matt Chapman handed the Athletics an early lead with his solo homer in the first inning, after which the game proceeded pretty quietly. Both teams had their share of hits, but no runners got past first base. Mike Fiers worked efficiently through six shutout innings. While Chapmania ran wild in the first inning, the A’s were unable to take advantage of a Chris Sale start where he was barely able to hit 90mph with his fastball.

*** Game Thread #1 | Game Thread #2 ***

Heres the rundown of tonight’s game against the BoSox:

  • Matt Chapman hitting it out of the park in his first at bat. 374 feet deep to the concrete steps in left field, just far enough to count.
  • Fiers making the breaking ball drop. Mike had a great mix of pitches today throwing almost as many curveballs as he did four-seamers.
  • Glen, Ray, and Dallas discussed the finer points of doctored balls, whether with pine tar or nacho cheese, while also wearing those garish MyTeams app jackets again.
  • Chris Sale pitching softer than Mike Fiers. It seems like whatever was up on Sale’s opening day continued on through his start. He managed to pitch through a full six innings, but his pitch speeds were considerably lower than usual, to the point that by the fourth inning he had largely abandoned his fastball.
  • A ball bouncing off the 3B ump’s knee and into left field in the 3rd kept Piscotty from turning his only hit of the night into a double. Though being in scoring position wouldn’t have added much, as the A’s didn’t manage to chain together any back-to-back hits or even come close to having multiple baserunners at any point in the game.
  • Quiet middle innings with a scattering of hits and LOBs as both teams struggled to produce against effective pitching. Both starters combined only amounted to four strikeouts, meaning that defence was the name of the game tonight.
  • Buchter locked in for a trio of strikeouts wrapped around a long double to left. I like the faith shown to leave Buchter in for 4 batters rather than pulling him for a righty. Perhaps BoMel is getting his prep in for the 2020 rule revisions.
  • It’s Stomper’s birthday. Wish him well.
  • Sweet Lou bringing out the stuff to sit the Sox down 1-2-3 in the 8th. Trivino breezed through the inning on only 7 pitches.
  • ANOTHER highlight Laureano throw from deep centre field. This is his second outfield assist to nail Xander Boegarts in as many games and only adds to the reputation that Noodles’ arm is anything but noodly.
  • Treinen throwing heat to earn his 3rd save of the season. Blake was throwing nasty stuff and had great movement on his pitches. He came about a foot shy of giving up the tying run, but thankfully Laureano was in centre.

While it was a tense one, the A’s got another win and stay two games back of the division leading Mariners. Let’s celebrate the win, celebrate Stomper turning 22, and celebrate keeping the Red Sox to 18 scoreless innings so far in 2019!

Go A’s!