The Oakland Athletics kicked off the final series of the 3-city road trip at American Family Field in Milwaukee, taking on the NL Central-leading Brewers. Adrian Houser, a 30-year-old righty took the mound for the 34-29 Brew Crew while A’s skipper Mark Kotsay went with 31-year-old lefty Sam Moll. This was Moll’s 100th career appearance but his first-ever start.
Esteury Ruiz got the game off to a quick start with a first pitch single to center field. Ruiz promptly stole second and advanced to third on an errant throw by Brewers catcher William Contreras. Ryan Noda walked to put runners on first and third. Ramon Laureano then doubled down the right field line scoring Ruiz and Noda and advancing to third on the throw home. Jonah Bride drove Laureano home with a base hit to left field. Thirty-four pitches into the first inning, the A’s had jumped out to a 3-0 lead.
Owen Miller led off the bottom of the first with a base hit and a stolen base. But Moll struck out three Brewers to escape the jam.
Shea Langeliers led off the second with a double down the third base line. Kevin Smith moved him to third on a fly out to right field. Esteury Ruiz singled to left field scoring Langeliers giving him his 26th RBI of the season. Ruiz bluffed steals numerous times in the next two AB’s keeping Houser on his toes but was stranded at first at the end of the A’s half of the inning.
Luis Medina replaced Moll in the bottom of the second inning. He started his night with a four-pitch walk to Joey Wiemer. Blake Perkins drove Wiemer home on a double to left field that JJ Bleday should have made a play on (but didn’t). Luis Urias doubled off the top of the outfield wall scoring Perkins. At the end of two, the A’s led 4-2.
Bleday and Langeliers led off the fourth with walks, putting runners on first and second with no outs. But neither was able to score due to the non-productive outs that followed.
Seth Brown walked to open the fifth inning. Ramon Laureano lived up to the nickname “laser” and ripped a single into left field, moving Brown to second. Laureano’s hit chased Brewers starter Houser after his 93rd pitch with no outs in the fifth inning. Reliever Trevor Megill walked Jace Peterson to load the bases, still with no outs. Jonah Bride hit a long sacrifice fly to score Brown and allow Laureano to advance to third. Megill re-loaded the bases with a walk to JJ Bleday. But Megill bore down and was able to escape with no more damage. The A’s led 5-2 in the middle of five.
In what would likely be Medina’s last inning, he lost a bit of control with a walk, a throwing error on a pickoff attempt, and a wild pitch, but managed to escape stranding former NL MVP Christian Yelich on third base as the inning ended.
Campbell’s own Lucas Erceg came in to relieve Medina in the bottom of the seventh and threw a quick 1-2-3 inning for the Athletics. He followed that with a scoreless eighth inning also.
Trevor May, whose 2023 has been a bit rocky at times, came in and slammed the door on the Brewers for his second save of the campaign. Tonight’s victory marks Luis Medina’s first Major League win and the A’s third consecutive “W”!