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Postgame wrapup from A’s 5-3 loss to Mariners

A few thoughts on the A’s season-opening defeat against Seattle, beyond the obvious point that four errors normally doesn’t equate to victory …

–Ben Sheets looked similar to me as he did in spring training with shaky command, and I’m not surprised by that considering he missed all of 2009. If Sheets stays healthy, I expect him to be much better in June and July than he is right now. He’s a fastball-curve ball guy, and he said the key is finding the location on his fastball. “Everything works off the fastball, so if you get the fastball in a groove, everything else is going to be better,” Sheets said.

Are you confident Sheets will get sharper with time? Feel free to sound off …

–Things may have turned out differently had Cliff Pennington not been thrown out at third in the seventh, on the Rajai Davis single that tied the game. That was a tough spot for Pennington. He was on first and when he got to second, he saw left fielder Milton Bradley bobble the ball and broke for third. Bob Geren gave him credit for holding up between second and third, to make sure Travis Buck scored before Pennington was tagged out. But I thought Pennington sort of ran into the tag, and Pennington, to his credit, accepted responsibility for the play afterward when addressing reporters.

But we’ll probably see lots of Athletics getting thrown out on the bases this season, as the team is stressing aggressive baserunning. And for the most part, I don’t think Geren will chew guys out for being aggressive and getting nailed.

–Speaking of baserunning, Ichiro Suzuki and Chone Figgins did exactly what the A’s hope to get from their speed guys this season. They put pressure on the A’s once they got on base and made things happen w/the running game. I didn’t get a chance to talk to A’s catcher Kurt Suzuki after the game, but I’d be interested to get his take on the Mariners’ base-stealers.

And you should watch Tuesday how lefty Dallas Braden, who has a good pickoff move, handles Ichiro and Figgins in game 2 of this series …

Check in w/you tomorrow …

Joe Stiglich

  • Andy K

    While my expectations for the season are low, the errors were tough to take. That and all the strike outs in the 9th.

  • Michael R.

    The A’s made 4 errors. Kouzmanoff who went 0-4, hit into 2 double plays including in the bottom of the 8th with no outs tied at 3-3. Then his error in the 9th kept the inning from ending and the 2 runs that followed. And you don’t mention this? Sheets pitched well for a first start. Hernandez walked 6!

  • 94577Z06

    Sheets looks fat and out of shape.

  • Dan Waterman

    The only person should leave the A’s is the GM Billy Boy. It is a new season, same old Billy Beane. If he does not get fired soon A’s will not have winning season, thus there is no new ballpark and the team would eventually move. I am surprised at the owners that they don’t see that. He would have been fired 5 years ago if he was in New York, Boston or in Chicago. Lucky moron

  • Joe Stiglich

    All true, Michael. At the beginning of that blog, I mentioned that four errors is no blueprint for victory. I’m just trying to give you a little insight that goes beyond the nuts and bolts of the game itself. Keep that feedback coming — positive and negative.