morning afternoon, Athletics Nation!
Doubleheader games are only seven innings apiece this year in MLB, and the Oakland A’s already saw the effects last week. They blanked the Minnesota Twins in both halves of an abbreviated double-dip, 14 innings total, and it went down as their first twin-bill shutout sweep since Vida and Catfish in 1974. Sean Manaea was credited with a complete game and a shutout despite only working seven frames.
However, there is a limit to what feats are considered official in seven innings, as it was predetermined that no-hitters would not count in short doubleheader games this year. It didn’t even take a month for that bylaw to be tested, as Arizona D’Backs lefty Madison Bumgarner held the Atlanta Braves hitless for the whole nightcap on Sunday. It counts as a shutout, but not technically a no-hitter.
Seven innings, NO HITS.— MLB (@MLB) April 25, 2021
MadBum tosses the first unofficial 7-inning no-no. pic.twitter.com/GceKxNOVaT
Bumgarner struck out seven batters and didn’t issue any walks or HBPs, and the only runner he allowed came on an error by his shortstop. Both of MLB’s full no-hitters this year (Joe Musgrove and Carlos Rodon) also featured no walks, with only a HBP in each.
Diamondbacks catcher Carson Kelly didn't exactly offer Madison Bumgarner a Buster Hug or even jump in his arms after the hitless performances.— John Shea (@JohnSheaHey) April 25, 2021
“I wanted to stay professional, because if I did that, he’d probably punch me in the mouth.”
Now the question turns to: Should it count as an official no-hitter? After all, it’s an arbitrary record-keeping rule that could be changed at any time if desired, even retroactively. D’Backs manager and former A’s infielder Torey Lovullo knows how he’ll remember it.
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo on Madison Bumgarner's hitless complete game: "Seven innings, nine innings, it’s a no-hitter. I’ll remember this day for the rest of my life.”— John Shea (@JohnSheaHey) April 25, 2021
MLB’s official historian thinks it should count.
Weimer's no-hitter, like Bumgarner's, should reenter the record books, imho. Are all the other shortened-game no-hitters the product of nature (rain, darkness) rather than design? (Let's bring Andy Hawkins back in, too.)— John Thorn (@thorn_john) April 26, 2021
You can probably guess what Bumgarner thinks.
I mean ...
No-hitter(7). Seems simple.— Tim Brown (@ByTimBrown) April 26, 2021
Adding to Arizona’s amazing day, in the first game of the doubleheader, D’Backs starter Zac Gallen threw a complete game one-hitter, before Bumgarner spun his gem. The Braves, who are a title contender this year, played two games over 14 innings and managed just one hit.
So here’s the absurdity of this no no-hitter. Zac Gallen threw a one hitter in the first game and that counts as a one hitter. But the no hitter doesn’t count as a no hitter because baseball!— Jayson Stark (@jaysonst) April 25, 2021
Reminder that, two weeks ago, the A’s dropped six runs on Bumgarner. Sounds like they beat a star pitcher who’s still got something left!
Rockies GM steps down
Colorado Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich stepped down Monday, the team announced. They will announce an interim replacement for the rest of this year, and then find a permanent new GM over the winter.
Bridich took over the role after the 2014 season, and the Rockies reached the playoffs in ‘17 and ‘18. However, during his tenure the team made routinely poor decisions in free agency and was fraught with internal turmoil, and his most lasting legacy might be driving superstar Nolan Arenado out of town by creating tension with the player and then trading him away.
Honestly, apart from extending Arenado, alienating him, then trading him for nothing, giving big money to below replacement level free agents, failing in the draft, and not forming a cohesive organizational strategy, Jeff Bridich has done a solid job as the Rockies GM.— Foolish Baseball (@FoolishBB) March 22, 2021
As for that record in free agency, here are two versions of the same unflattering concept.
The Rockies signed Nolan Arenado to a $260 million contract extension in 2019.— Manny Randhawa (@MannyOnMLB) March 13, 2021
From 2015-19, the Rockies spent $256 million on 8 free agents who signed multiyear deals -- those 8 produced a combined -8 WAR.
Unbelievable -- #Rockies GM Bridich has shelled out over $300 million to 19 free agents in his tenure, with their performance totaling -3.4 WAR. Why is he still in this role?— Dave Black (@dawblack) March 23, 2021
Melissa Lockard of The Athletic raises an interesting point regarding potential fallout from this move.
Bridich stepping down now could have a significant impact on the trade deadline. If they hire an interim GM, will s/he be more or less willing to deal Trevor Story than Bridich would have been? Is Story more or less likely to want to negotiate if that position is still unsettled?— Melissa Lockard (@melissalockard) April 26, 2021
- AN: Relive the action as A’s ride the wave during 13-game win streak
- A’s activate Mike Fiers, option Adam Kolarek
- Kawahara: Matt Chapman trying to work through slow start ($)
- Gallegos: Strikeouts down, contact up, Olson surging
Rays announced their starters for the first three games against Oakland:— Adam Berry (@adamdberry) April 25, 2021
A’s injuries (and also their opponents’ health)
Mike Fiers is back, in the bullpen for now.
Scott Emerson said Fiers will sit in the bullpen for now and they'll make a decision on him in the next couple of days.— Martín Gallegos (@MartinJGallegos) April 26, 2021
Meanwhile, at the alternate site, Buddy Reed is back in action after a quad strain ended his exciting spring.
Today's A's alt site squad lineup at Sacramento: B.Reed CF, L.Davidson SS, C.Perez DH, F.Schwindel 1B, F.Pena C, E.Diaz 3B, N.Allen 2B, G.Deichmann RF, C.Thomas LF, M.Milburn SP.— Athletics Farm (@AthleticsFarm) April 25, 2021
And elsewhere in the AL West
Dusty Baker said Jake Odorizzi had forearm tightness and is going for further evaluation today or tomorrow.— Brian McTaggart (@brianmctaggart) April 24, 2021
A’s Game Highlights
- Game #21: Bassitt grounds Orioles, Lowrie homers, A’s win 13th straight
- Game #22: Hays & Means Committee takes toll on A’s, ending 13-game win streak
- Former A’s prospects: Neuse homers, but Fowler and Nottingham DFA’d
The win streak is over, at 13 in a row, after a loss to the Orioles on Sunday. Mark Canha had a .464 OBP during the 13 victories, including this two-run single in the final win Saturday.
It’s still sinking in that Jed Lowrie is just fully back, and the A’s got him basically for free.
Laser is heating up, with his second homer in three games in Baltimore.
What a wave!
It was fun A’s fans. On to the next one! The show goes on! pic.twitter.com/Jh5OfQAuQ9— Chris Bassitt (@C_Bass419) April 25, 2021
Bauer vs. Tatis
Fernando Tatis Jr hit two homers off Trevor Bauer on Saturday and celebrated on his way around the bases, and Bauer gave one of my favorite answers in all of baseball history.
Bauer: “Pitchers who have that done to them and react by throwing at people, or getting upset and hitting people or whatever, I think it’s pretty soft. If you give up a homer, a guy should celebrate it. ... I think it’s important that the game moves in that direction and that we stop throwing at people because they celebrated having some success on the field.”
"I'm all for it. I think it's important that the game moves in that direction and we stop throwing at people because they celebrated having some success on the field." @BauerOutage on Fernando Tatis Jr.'s celebrations. pic.twitter.com/RdLMAWhQVD— SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) April 25, 2021
However, Bauer was not supportive of this tactic.
Is Tatis Jr. gettin’ free peeks? I understand that it could sound like sour grapes after El Niño rolls into town & unleashes a storm of homers..— Dallas Braden (@DALLASBRADEN209) April 25, 2021
Is it fair to ask whether or not he might be helping himself out? Sure. This is why C’s set up as late as possible & guard signs. pic.twitter.com/8CH6UBrt5l
It stayed feisty on Twitter
Who says there needs to be three acts in a play when two suffice? pic.twitter.com/ze2bWVUJSr— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) April 25, 2021
The other players with 2 in one season:— Stats By STATS (@StatsBySTATS) April 25, 2021
Felipe Alou, 1966 (Law/Koufax)
Gorman Thomas, 1980 (Palmer/Guidry)
Robin Yount, 1982 (Perry/Palmer)
Ken Griffey Jr., 1997 (Cone/Clemens)
Manny Machado, 2018 (Sabathia/Kluber)
No one has ever done so 3+ times in a season.
Tatis Facts Jr
Fernando Tatis Jr. of the @Padres is the first player in MLB history to have 5+ home runs and 2+ stolen bases in a road series.— Stats By STATS (@StatsBySTATS) April 26, 2021
Tatis Facts III
Fernando Tatís Jr. has just become the 1st #Padres player (3rd overall) with multiple multi-homer games at Dodger Stadium in same season. Two straight nights joins him w/ Barry Bonds on 4/2, 4/3 2002 as only previous visiting player to do so in consecutive games. #HungryForMore— Jessica Brand (@JessicaDBrand) April 25, 2021
Tatis Facts IV
Even though he’s played only 63 percent of his team’s games so far, Fernando Tatis Jr. leads MLB with 7* HR and 9 errors. Most exciting player in the game? Not much doubt. (*tied)— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) April 26, 2021
Best of MLB Twitter
You’re filthy bro. Keep doing your thing. Love your repertoire and how you attack batters!— Marcus Stroman (@STR0) April 25, 2021
The new best rivalry in MLB
How great have these Dodgers-Padres games been?— Jayson Stark (@jaysonst) April 26, 2021
This is their 7th meeting of the year.
And the 6th in which the tying and/or winning run came to the plate in the last inning.
So rare when we build up these rivalries...and then they live up to every word.
A’s Fan of the Month right here