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Game #11: A’s Fall to Astros 3-2 in Opener

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MLB: Oakland Athletics at Houston Astros Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Relive the Game Thread from tonight.

It’s one of life’s ironies that the day you have all the time in the world to craft a recap worthy of the game you are watching, the game didn’t comply. And on the flip side, the day when the A’s won the series, took three of four from the Red Sox, recap time was limited.

Sigh.

At least I’ve gone 50/50 in recaps in the last two days.

And this game wasn’t winnable. I mean it was. The A’s were down 1-0, 2-1, 3-1, and 3-2. Technically this was one of those games that maybe allowed you a glimmer of excitement when the A’s tied it 1-1, and closed it to 3-2, but somehow it never felt like a winning game. Death by singles is not inspiring, and aside from Laureano’s double (because Laureano), singles aren’t going to cut it.

Frankie Montas ended the night with an okay, but less than inspiring, line, but obviously good enough to get a win had the offense done anything at all. He allowed 7 hits and 3 walks (he did strike out 5 in his 5 innings), but managed to allow only 2 runs. He worked out of jams left and right. The run that eventually won it for the Astros came from Wendelken’s inning; Petit and Rodney were nearly perfect.

The A’s best chance to score early came in the third inning, as Ramon Laureano (making a splash early this season) doubled to lead off the inning. Robbie Grossman worked a one-out walk, stole second base, and Stephen Piscotty walked to bring up Khris Davis with the bases loaded. He struck out.

Montas allowed the first run of the night in the third as a walk, single and single plated the first Astros run. The A’s tied the game immediately following; Kendrys walked to open the inning, and Marcus Semien came within a hair’s-breadth of runners at first and third as he pushed a sort-of bunt hit just past the pitcher into the vacated spot where the second basemen should have been. However, Collin McHugh, who was great tonight, made a diving stop and barely—just barely—threw him out. Instead of runners at first and third with no one out, the A’s had a runner at second with one out. It was a big swing in the game. Jurickson Profar, who has really struggled so far this early season, grounded out to move Morales to third and he would have been stranded there had Laureano not singled him in. Have a start to the season, kid!

Of course, the tie lasted .001 of a second; Correa opened the fourth with a long home run to put the Astros back on top (and the fourth could have yielded more) and another run in the seventh gave the Astros all they needed.

The A’s mounted a teAse in the ninth; a single to open the inning by Kendrys Morales set the table (Canha pinch-hit), and after Semien struck out (semi-questionably), Profar struck out (expected), and it appeared that Laureano was hit by a pitch and went to first. The call was overturned, he was sent back to the box, where he was all, I’ll do it myself, and singled in Morales, for his fourth single of the night. He was, quite literally, all the A’s offense.

But then, Pinder grounded out to end the game.

And the A’s fall 3-2. But they did hang the entire game with the Astros and there are two more to come.

We’ll see you tomorrow night at 6:05PM.

LET’S GO OAK-LAND!