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Elephant Rumblings: A’s sweep Angels to start September

MLB news roundup

Los Angeles Angels v Oakland Athletics Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

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.

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.

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.

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.

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