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Game #15: Dribblers and Dingers Put The A’s On Top

MLB: Oakland Athletics at Baltimore Orioles Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

After a quick first inning, the A’s fought their way onto the board in the second, almost entirely without hitting the ball past the base paths. Two infield hits to start the inning, one off of a Khris Davis checked swing, the other a dribbler by Pinder. Next, there was a full count strike out swinging by Canha, followed by a sacrifice ball in the infield by Laureano to move the runners over. Profar hits ANOTHER infield hit to score Khris. Add on one more infield RBI hit by Josh Phegley with a fantastic slide to get on base and make it count. The first ball out of the infield in the inning also made it out of the park, as Semien hit it over left field to make it 5-0 for the A’s.

***Relive the Game Thread***

Ramon Laureano kept the Orioles off the board in the 3rd, earning another OF assist throwing out Ritchie Martin on a questionable call to run home. While it was not quite the same highlight calibre as his Red Sox throws, it seems like the entire AL East could stand to buy a couple shirts.

Brett Anderson pitched quick as always, he allowed a few hits through his first few innings but the O’s were held off from crossing the plate. Anderson settled in and kept his pitch count down, at one point retiring 11 O’s in a row. Brett managed to give a day off to a majority of the A’s bullpen arms as he threw for 6.2 innings before giving up 2 runs on a wind assisted fly ball out to centre-right.

The A’s managed to push John Means out of his first ever MLB start after only 3 innings and 60 pitches. Means was followed by Evan Phillips who kept the A’s hitless through the 4th and 5th until giving up a liner to Pinder in the 6th.

Kuiper and Fosse called out the Boog’s BBQ stand in Camden Yards at least 10 times. I say at least, because while I did my best to keep count, they did it so often that I’m sure I missed one or two.

Jurickson Profar may have made it out of his slump today. He had a multi-hit, 5 RBI, no error game, AND he hit his first dinger of the year on the first pitch of the seventh inning. Chad Pinder also had a great game, today batting in the 5th slot in the lineup. He swung for 3 hits, 2 RBI, and a walk.

The A’s rallied again in the eighth, scoring four runs on a pair of hits from Profar and Phegley, as well as a sac fly from Semien.

Miguel Castro had an unfortunate 9th inning on the mound for the O’s. A double for Piscotty and a walk for Pinder led to the baserunners both being advanced on a balk then both scoring on a Laureano single. Ramon then was advanced to second on a second balk by Castro, and scored on a rocket shot to right field by Profar.

The bullpen did their job admirably as Trivino threw for two outs across the 7th and 8th, and Hendricks tossed 1.2 scoreless to round the game out.

I want to shout out Josh Phegley. Josh called a great game today but he really came up clutch when it counted. His ducking slide to avoid the tag and make it to first base in the second inning was crucial to keep the inning going to get to Semien’s homer. He planted perfectly to receive Laureano’s 240 foot throw from centre and then acted quickly to lay the tag on Martin when the runner managed to avoid both the initial tag and first base. All of this was on top of how well Josh has been swinging the bat lately including 2 hits and an RBI tonight. Props to Phegley!

Overall, tonight was a fantastic comeback game for an A’s team that has been playing better than what the win column would like to tell you. The base paths were busy and the balls were flying. The team was clicking and playing as strong as we know they can. The Athletics take the win on a 13-2 game and bring their record to 7-8.