Josh Donaldson gave A’s fans (human and canine) a reason to go home happy Friday night. (Staff photo/Jose Carlos Fajardo)
Not much in the way of pregame news today from A’s manager Bob Melvin. Josh Reddick, who homered for the Stockton Ports last night, will play twice more with them and they’ll discuss the next move after Sunday’s game. Coco Crisp, bothered by a neck injury, will D.H. tonight. The neck figures to bother him for a little while. There’s still no timetable for Kyle Blanks, who has been able to do some running on the field.
Melvin did speak again about how much he enjoys his team putting on a show when the A’s do have a big crowd on hand. Last night, 27,232 were in the house and were rewarded with Josh Donaldson’s walk-off home run. With it being Bark at the Park night and dogs on hand, Melvin hopes to have snagged a few future customers.
A’s closer Sean Doolittle didn’t pitch Sunday, but did get his first big league at bat. (Staff photo/Jane Tyska).
OK, that game was just plain weird. It had all the looks of a ho-hum loss most of the day. Tommy Milone’s struggles against the Boston Red Sox continues and Jon Lester was pitching a gem. The Red Sox were going to avoid the four-game sweep and the A’s would still be satisfied with taking three of four.
Then…all of a sudden the game is tied. The eighth-inning rally started so harmlessly with an HBP and then a walk. Then back-to-back-to-back singles suddenly made it a game. You can read the game story here, but this had so much more that I had to cut.
Jimmy Durkin in for John Hickey on getaway day as the A’s try to complete the sweep of the Red Sox before heading to New York.
Sonny Gray will get pushed back four days and make his next start Saturday against the Miami Marlins. (Rick Yeatts/Getty Images)
The biggest news today is that the A’s will push Sonny Gray’s next start back four days to give their young ace some extra rest. Instead of starting Tuesday against the New York Mets, Gray will go Saturday against the Miami Marlins.
“Just giving Sonny a little bit of a break,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said in explaining the decision.
On Monday, the following was written on the white board next to where the A’s lineup is posted daily in their clubhouse.
Slow torture vs. Instant kill
Slow torture is a team approach.
Instant kill is an individual approach.
Home runs end rallies, not start them.
Keep pitchers in the stretch and trust your teammates.
Pass the torch if necessary….
Derek Norris blasted a pair of 3-0 count, three-run home runs off former A’s All-Star Gio Gonzalez in Sunday’s 9-1 win. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
I’m going to keep this pretty short and sweet since we had a nice easy game and I’m going to try to get home in time to enjoy the rest of Mothers’ Day.
Most of the talk of the day can be found in the game story, which is posted here and should be updated shortly. This was all about Derek Norris’ domination of Gio Gonzalez, the player for which he was once traded.
That December 2011 deal in which the A’s sent away their All-Star Gonzalez netted Tommy Milone and Derek Norris along with Brad Peacock and A.J. Cole. Considering the events of this weekend, including Milone’s eight innings of shutout ball in a win Friday, that trade looks pretty good right now.
A’s third baseman Josh Donaldson dives in vain for a line drive off the bat of Seattle Mariners’ Michael Saunders. (D. Ross Cameron/Bay Area News Group)
The whole “baseball is a game of inches” is about as old a cliché as there is in baseball. There’s probably a good reason why.
In a matter of four batters on Monday night at the Coliseum, there were three plays that were decided by a few inches that dramatically altered the game. Michael Saunders led off with a sharp liner that deflected off the glove of third baseman Josh Donaldson. Then Stefen Romero singled on a grounder that went off the glove of pitcher Scott Kazmir.
Two batters later, Corey Hart delivered a seeing-eyed single and the Mariners had a 1-0 lead. A second run scored on an RBI groundout, Seattle was up 2-0 early and those two runs were the difference in a 4-2 win.
Yoenis Cespedes has a pair of RBIs in the A’s 3-2 win over the Red Sox on Sunday, but a hamstring injury will keep him from starting Monday’s game. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Outfielders Yoenis Cespedes and Josh Reddick are both out of the lineup as the A’s return home to face the Seattle Mariners on Monday night.
Reddick sprained his left ankle trying to get out of the batters box when he hit into an inning-ending double play in the ninth inning of the A’s 3-2 win in 10 innings against the Boston Red Sox on Sunday.
A’s manager Bob Melvin said before Monday’s game that Reddick won’t be available for “a day or two. We’ll see how he feels tomorrow.”
A’s outfielder Michael Taylor has enjoyed a productive spring training, but time appears to be running out on his tenure in Oakland. The 28-year-old Stanford product is out of options and there’s not a spot on the A’s Opening Day roster for him.
Manager Bob Melvin indicated a trade could be likely for Taylor.
“You never know how it plays out here but he’s created this situation for him,” Melvin said of Taylor. “I know other teams are looking at him and watching him pretty hard. It’s a credit to him that he played so relaxed this spring and put up the numbers that he did. Regardless what happens, I feel that he’ll end up in a good situation for him.”
The A’s lost a game on Tuesday night, and it was an ugly loss. The eighth inning has to rank up there among the worst they’ve played this season. But this is baseball. Teams, even ones who achieve postseason success, suffer losses they want to forget about.
But if the injury to Derek Norris knocks him out for some time, this is the type of game that could be felt a little longer. A’s manager Bob Melvin confirmed after the game that Norris has a fractice left big toe. Norris didn’t speak with the media, but was seen limping heavily through the locker room after the game.
Melvin didn’t know yet if Norris would need to go on the disabled list. One would certainly think so. Broken toes are tricky. There’s really not much you can do to them. They just have to heal on their own, typically. But a toe, especially a big toe, is pretty key for a catcher. They spend all game in the squat and in case you’ve never been in a squat, there’s a lot of pressure being placed on the toe. Factor in the potential for taking a really painful foul ball off the toe (and that happens fairly often) and it seems pretty likely that Norris will be gone at least until early September.