Happy 4th to everyone … It’s a warm afternoon at the Coliseum and there should be a big holiday crowd on hand. And that was part of the pregame discussion with A’s manager Bob Melvin today. It means a lot to Melvin for the A’s to play well when they do draw big home crowds, which isn’t often. The A’s have played some stinkers this year when the Coliseum is packed. But last night, they came through with a dramatic victory in front of a sellout crowd. “When we get it packed in here, it’s really a fun park to play in,” Melvin said. “I’ve talked quite a few times about being disappointed about playing poorly in front of big crowds. We’re starting to play better. We’re finally kind of rewarding our fans who come out on special days. If we can continue to do that, we’ll get more people in the stands.”
–A good start from A.J. Griffin will help the A’s chances of completing a sweep. Each of his first two career starts have come in what I’d consider “big” environments — a home game against the Giants, on the road at first-place Texas — and Griffin has pitched well. He’ll get another test today against the Red Sox, who will have a sizable contingent cheering for them as always …
A’s: Crisp CF, Weeks 2B, Reddick RF, Cespedes LF, Smith DH, Moss 1B, Norris C, Inge 3B, Pennington SS; Griffin RHP.
Red Sox: Nava LF, Kalish CF, Ortiz DH, Saltalamacchia C, Gonzalez 1B, Gomez 3B, Ross RF, Aviles SS, Punto 2B; Cook RHP.