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Game #2, #3: A’s Drop Both Games to NL West

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But Tony Kemp homers!

MLB: Oakland Athletics-Media Day Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Sunday and welcome to the recap of our double-dip today; a split-squad game that let twice as many A’s players and pitchers get real-time game experience!

Today’s home game at Hohokam Stadium against the Giants featured two innings of Mike Fiers in his first Spring start and he was perfect, recording two groundouts and a strikeout in the first inning, and two popups and a lineout in the second before he exited.

The road game, at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick (Arizona Diamondbacks), featured Chris Bassitt, also in his first Spring start; he did not fare nearly as well. The second batter he faced (Ketel Marte) took him deep to put the Diamondbacks on the board 1-0 and after two walks and an RBI single, he exited the game allowing two runs in his single inning of work.

OAK 0, ARI 2

Both A’s lineups had a walk in their respective first innings (Semien at home, Pinder on the road, as the rest of the side struck out), but neither team was able to score for the first two innings. Luis Barrera (who also made a great catch in the seventh) singled in the second inning in the home game, but the road lineup wouldn’t see a hit until the fourth inning (Pinder again). One side complaint: I’m going to go out on a limb and say that there was a lot more to say about Semien’s 2019 season than “he went 1-5 in the playoff game”, thank you very much for the chosen words to announce his first at-bat, A’s announcers.

Jake Diekman took over for Mike Fiers in the home game and immediately gave up a home run to Abiatal Avelino to breakup the scoreless game. He then allowed a walk and a single, and after a whole lot of Little League throwing the ball around, another run scored on an error ultimately charged to Matt Chapman. After another walk, Diekman finally recorded an out, and a second, and then he didn’t cover first base on a play to Matt Olson, but did manage to throw out a runner at home to end the inning.

SF 2, OAK 0

Austin Allen opened the A’s third inning at home with a single, and after Semien K’d, Tony Kemp singled him to second. Matt Chapman subsequently “singled” to right field, but Kemp was out on the throw at second and Allen stopped at third. Olson walked to load the bases with two outs, brining up Mark Canha, who had a real Spring hit; a two-run single to tie the game.

SF 2, OAK 2

Meanwhile, Paul Blackburn took over for Chris Bassitt on the road, and was, well, even worse. He allowed three singles and a sac fly for the Diamondback’s third run in the second and then a single, single, error, another runner thrown out at home, a stolen base, a walk, and two more singles to allow three more runs before he was yanked halfway through his second Spring Training inning in favor of T.J. McFarland, who brought the inning to a close.

OAK 0, ARI 6

The road A’s rallied in the fourth with a leadoff single by Pinder and a Seth Brown double scored his pinch-runner for the A’s first run. After a walk by Skye Bolt, Ryan Goins singed Brown in for the A’s second run. A double by Carlos Perez scored Skye Bolt for the A’s third run, cutting the lead in half.

OAK 3, ARI 6

Back at home, Daniel Gossett replaced Jake Diekman for the fourth inning and was perfect in his outing. Ian Gardeck took the fifth and gave up a couple of singles and a run; he was saved from worse damage by a double-play, but did allow the Giants to take the 3-2 advantage. Nate Orf walked to open the A’s half of the fifth, but was caught stealing ahead of Tony Kemp’s second hit; a game-tying HOME RUN! Edwin Diaz doubled right behind him, but couldn’t score. And after five, the game was tied again.

SF 3, OAK 3

Out on the road, J.B. Wendelken replaced T.J. McFarland and threw a perfect inning; three groundouts. He was replaced in the fifth by Jaime Schultz, who recorded two strikeouts and a pop up; the sixth was handled by James Kaprielian, who allowed a single but struck out two in his inning. The offense couldn’t muster much of any rally (only singles by Greg Deichmann and Vimael Machin) since their three-run fourth, and the game played on, throwing Grant Holmes for the seventh.

Back at home, Lucas Luetge worked around a lead-off double to keep the game scoreless, while the A’s couldn’t use a single by Luis Barrera (Franklin Barreto struck out in his at-bat), and Jordan Weems pitched the seventh around a 2-out double. Dillon Thomas had an A’s single, but was erased by Diaz in a double-play. The Giants took the lead in the top of the eighth off Parker Dunshee on a single, a walk, and the RBI single. Luis Barrera singled again in the eighth, but Frankin Barreto doubled him off the bases and ended the A’s rally. Not a great showing for him, now out of options.

SF 4, OAK 3

Dunshee continued for the ninth and was just as ineffective as the eighth; allowing a lead-off single, a two-out single, and was replaced by James Naile, who allowed a wild pitch for the Giants’ fifth run. The A’s went quietly in the ninth; a fly out by Austin Beck, a fly out by Nate Orf and a ground-out by Dillon Thomas to close the home game.

SF 5, OAK 3 - FINAL

Back on the road, Grant Holmes allowed a double and a triple in the seventh inning for the Diamondbacks’ seventh run of the afternoon. The A’s worked one walk in the seventh (Ronnie Freeman), and nothing in the eight. Mikey White made a nice play at third in the eighth. Holmes pitched the eight as well, this time stranding a lead-off single. Jeremy Eierman struck out to open the ninth, Jason Krizan had a hit, White struck out, Freeman walked to put two on, a wild pitch moved both runners, but Nate Mondou struck out to end the game.

OAK 3, ARI 7 - FINAL

That’s all she wrote today; the A’s lost both, but we saw nearly everyone! Tomorrow the A’s take on the Brewers, with the following lineup in Sean Manaea’s first Spring start:

Semien (SS)
Kemp (LF)
Chapman (3B)
Olson (1B)
Canha (CF)
Heim (C)
Bolt (RF)
Allen (DH)
Mateo (2B)
Manaea (P)

See you back here tomorrow for more continued Spring Training action!