The Oakland A’s were just an inning away from ending their tumble.
They led all night Friday, from the first inning, but missed the save in the 9th and lost 3-2 to the Cleveland Guardians in progressive field. The A’s have now lost 10 games in a row.
*** Click here to revisit tonight’s game thread! ***
Everything went right for eight innings. Oakland hit a homer in the 1st inning, then another in the 2nd to take an early lead. Their starting pitcher dominated, pinning Cleveland to four hits in eight goalless frames. Your defense has set a few highlights.
Then everything collapsed. The bullpen tried to end things in the 9th but allowed the first three hitters they faced a solo homer, a walk and a double. At this point, a pair of sack flies was enough to bring home the tie and walk-off runs. wump wump.
The A’s lineup struck early, but not often. your third batter of the game, Seth Brownblasted a solo homer for a quick 1-0 lead.
This ball flew 412 feet with a mighty initial speed of 104.2 mph, but in the 2nd inning Sean Murphy Beat these brands. Murphy’s 112.9 mph rocket traveled 416 feet for another solo homer.
Unfortunately, that’s all they got tonight. They put runners on base in every inning from the 3rd through the 7th, but never crossed home plate again. After a leadoff single in the 7th, their final nine batters were retired in turn.
Two runs was almost enough.
On the other side of the ball Paul Blackburn had the best start of his career. The breakout right-hander worked eight brilliant innings and never let the Guardians reach third base. They put together a few rallies against him early on, but he crushed them both, and then he retired 17 of his last 18 batters, including the last eight in a row.
- black brandy: 8 ip, 0 runs, 3 Ks, 1 BB, 4 hits, 101 pitches
It was a masterpiece. He didn’t miss many bats, but there were few hard touches and most of it was on the ground. The last out he recorded put an exclamation point on the wonderful outing, with Kevin Smith make a highlight play on third base.
All the bullpen had to do was close out the 9th inning with a 2-0 lead.
Closer Dany Jimenez got the call, which has been a pleasantly reliable plan so far this season. It didn’t work this time. Within three batters, both the tie and winning runs were in scoring position with no one falling out. A deliberate walk loaded the bases and a sack fly brought home the tie run.
Blown with the defense Sam Moll occurred to stop the damage. He got a grounder, but he was too slow to get any outs and reload bases. Another sac fly drove the starting shot home to end the game.
Welcome to a remodeling season. On the plus side, Blackburn made a big move to punch his ticket to the All-Star Game.
A’s have led 2-0 in each of the last 4 games. You lost all 4. They’ve lost 10 in a row and are bottom 20-40 in the league.
— Ben Ross (@BenRossTweets) June 11, 2022