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Game #123: A’s drop series opener to Marlins 3-0

Not a good night from the hitters

MLB: Miami Marlins at Oakland Athletics Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland A’s dropped the series opener to the Miami Marlins 3-0 on Monday night at the Coliseum.

The starting pitching was shaky early but settled down nicely, but the bats were completely shut down as the club managed just three hits and a trio of walks on the night as they got shutout by a rookie starting pitcher. Not a good showing from the lineup.

*** Click here to revisit today’s Game Thread! ***

Oller rocky early, settles in late

Coming off the best outing of his young career, rookie right-hander Adam Oller labored through the first few innings of tonight’s game. He loaded the bases in the first thanks to a hit and a pair of walks but was bailed out by his defense, specifically shortstop Nick Allen:

He wasn’t so lucky in the second and third. He was tagged for a leadoff home run in the second on a pitch down the middle, then a walk and back-to-back doubles brought in two more for the Marlins in the third inning.

From there, though, Oller didn’t allow any more damage. He allowed just one more hit and had a couple more walks over his final three innings of work, finishing strong and retiring the final six batters he faced on the evening.

  • Adam Oller: 6 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 5 BB, 2 K, 111 pitches

Considering he walked five batters, it’s actually somewhat impressive that he didn’t allow more runs tonight. The high pitch count was a career-high and also a season-high for the club, topping Logue’s 107 pitch outing earlier this month. Oller’s final line might not look too impressive but he did a good job keeping the damage to a minimum and keeping the A’s close, at least giving a chance for the bats to come alive.

The bullpen kept it up, holding down the Marlins for the final three innings. New arm Norge Ruiz had his second career appearance and it went a lot better than the first as he threw two shutout innings, and lefty Kirby Snead tossed a scoreless frame himself. They also got a little help from Tony Kemp in left field:

Offense goes silent against rookie starter

On the other side of things, the bats had a couple early chances but ultimately did next to nothing against Marlins’ rookie Edward Cabrera. The first two A’s hitters tonight reached base on a couple walks to start the game, but that was wasted, and they had back-to-back singles in the third to start the third inning that they also couldn’t cash in.

Those two singles ended up being the only two hits the club collected against the right-hander as he mowed down the bats from there. He retired 17 of the next 18 A’s batters he faced, walking Shea Langeliers once and retiring 14 in a row. He pitched 8 complete innings before finally giving way to the bullpen.

With a 3-run lead and Cabrera at 101 pitches, Miami went there in the ninth. The A’s didn’t have much better luck against Marlins’ closer Tanner Scott as they got a meaningless single in the ninth before Langeliers ended this one striking out.

So there goes that little win streak the club had, and that’s now 13 times they’ve been shutout, but wins and losses don’t really matter for the organization at this point in the season. The most important takeaway from tonight was seeing Oller able to work through some major struggles and lack of control to still provide the squad with six full innings, helping save the bullpen for the rest of the series.

Only 39 games left this year! My how the season flies when you’re… having… fun? They’ll try to get back into the win column tomorrow night in the second game of the series. It’ll be another rookie on the mound for the A’s in Zach Logue, and he’ll be opposed by veteran Pablo Lopez.