Sunday, August 24, 2014

OK, This Was the Plan

Here's how the modern-day Bash Brothers pushed across their winning run in the bottom of the eighth Saturday night against the Angels:

-- Coco Crisp pitches a soft single into shallow center field.

-- Craig Gentry nearly gets himself killed trying to bunt Crisp over to second but finally ends up receiving his sacrifice, anyway, as the pitcher bobbles his two-strike bouncer.

-- Josh Donaldson's groundout lets Coco to third.

-- Derek Norris is bestowed a base as he is struck on the rear end with a pitch.

-- Brandon Moss survives his pinch at-bat long enough that a fortuitous wild pitch allows home Coco.

And there, in Coco's shirt, I celebrated on my couch--as proudly as any quarterback's sweetheart in a letterman's jacket ever has, in the bleachers on a Friday night.

Jon Lester had given up one run in seven innings, and that wasn't good enough to earn the win. It took two innings of scoreless relief work by the Oakland bullpen and Coco's crazy hop, skip and jump home in the bottom of the eighth for the A's to beat the Angels, 2-1. 

This was presumably the plan, of course--go get another stud pitcher, give away however much hitting it takes to get him, hope to eke out late-season wins by the thinnest of margins. It worked Saturday, and I absolutely can see Billy Beane's apparent point that the version of the A's Saturday night with Yoenis C├ęspedes in the batting order and a less talented and steely pitcher than Jon Lester on the mound might've lost,  3-2, instead of winning, 2-1. 

I must say, though, if this is how we're going to go about our business, that I really would prefer that Lester just go ahead and pitch complete-game shutouts. It would make things less nerve-racking. But, whatever, this makes two wins to open the series with the Angels, and now Oakland and Los Angeles are tied atop the American League West and for best record in baseball: 76-52. 

A's and Angels go at it again Sunday night at 7:05 p.m. Central--not this afternoon, as digital-age Swingin' A's fans like me who downloaded the Oakland schedule into their Outlook calendars before the season opened might be thinking. Tonight's game is on ESPN!  The Internet Is Amazing™, but, so, still is (Hooray for) TV(™), too. #GREENCOLLAR!     


  1. Not the plan: Angels up, 5-0, at Oakland in the third ...

  2. Now 8-0.

    After today, it appears the A's are going to be a game behind the Angels for first place in the American League West and 4.5 ahead of the Mariners for second. Seattle is now 13 games over .500.