Happy Labor Day, Athletics Nation!
I hope you are getting a well-deserved day off and basking in the afterglow of the A’s sweep of AL West rivals the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The Athletics pitched around Shohei Ohtani and pummeled the stripped-down Angels all weekend, sandwiching a tight pitching duel on Saturday between smorgasbords at the plate on Friday and Sunday. The A’s bats exploded for 21 runs and 15 extra base hits in the series, the first three-game set the team has swept since June.
The first game on Friday was a pretty straightforward 9-2 romp. The A’s broke out for five runs in the fourth and never looked back. A’s hitters doubled eight times; Zack Gelof and Jordan Diaz each did so twice. Esteury Ruiz uncharacteristically tattooed one for his third homer of the season. He did a bunch of other impressive stuff too, showing that he wants to play every day and break another stolen base record. Meanwhile, A’s starter JP Sears demonstrated a return to form through six scoreless innings.
Esteury Ruiz tonight:— Karl Buscheck (@KarlBuscheck) September 2, 2023
His 54th steal
A 415-foot moonshot HRpic.twitter.com/mhMZTB3RC9
Saturday’s 2-1 win was made possible by a gutsy veteran performance from Paul Blackburn, who managed to weave through five innings of one-run ball. Five bullpen arms then combined to pitch four scoreless, allowing the A’s to prevail on the strength of one swing from Brent Rooker, a two-run shot, Rook’s 23rd home run of the season.
Brent Rooker for the A's LEAD! pic.twitter.com/ZwGJ7bVzA4— Talkin’ Baseball (@TalkinBaseball_) September 2, 2023
Prospects for a sweep appeared a bit bleak through most of yesterday’s game, as the A’s bats seemed to have run out of steam.
A's have no hits through five innings against the Angels.— Martín Gallegos (@MartinJGallegos) September 3, 2023
But then the A’s broke out for four in the sixth inning, with homers from Ryan Noda and Seth Brown. A high-traffic seventh inning brought six more A’s home, and Trevor May put down an Angels uprising in the ninth to seal a 10-6 win and series sweep.
This is the kind of baseball I hope to see when I tune into an A’s game!
The A’s have now won eight of their last 13 and are undefeated in September. The Blue Jays are coming to Oakland today, and hopefully our young Athletics will keep it rolling through the remainder of this home stand, month, and season.
- Ashford: Athletics’ Zack Gelof wins Rookie of the Month for August
- Ashford: A’s bats explode in 10-6 win against Angels
- Gallegos: Noda thriving down the stretch — fractured jaw or not
- Shea: Angels fans need to follow A’s fans’ lead, demand Arte Moreno sell team ($)
MLB News & Interest:
- Deeds: AL East Notes: Means, Bautista, Verdugo, Bradley
- Polishuk: Angels Place Max Stassi On Restricted List
- Polishuk: Vladimir Guerrero Jr.’s Unusual, Replacement-Level Season
- Chen: Ohtani steals his way to more Angels history
- DeRosa: No. 1 overall prospect Holliday promoted to Triple-A (source)
- Deeds: New York Notes: Marte, Mets, Hamilton, Rizzo
- Deeds: NL Central Notes: Stroman, Cubs, McLain, India, Matz
- Today in Baseball History
Best of X:
August’s AL ROTM reaches high.
Hard to argue, Melissa.
In my opinion, winning Rookie of the Month in the first full month of a player’s career is v. good— Melissa Lockard (@melissalockard) September 4, 2023
A’s take time out for kids in need of a lift.
Bigger than baseball— Oakland A's (@Athletics) September 3, 2023
In recognition of September as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, A's players visited UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital to spend time with some inspirational young patients.@UCSFChildrens | @StarlightUS pic.twitter.com/aEeLgTNlIb
And a huge day for a young cancer survivor.
It’s more than just a game— Oakland A's (@Athletics) September 3, 2023
As part of Childhood Cancer Awareness Day, we hosted 14-year-old leukemia survivor Jayden Zentner and his family! He attended pregame warmups, met with players, and threw out the first pitch ⚾️ pic.twitter.com/AaCdjp8v8L
OK, Jonny Gomes, you’re a Banana.