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Homer Happy A’s Win Series

July 4, 2011

 

The A’s did something yesterday afternoon that they have not done before this year. Hit two home runs in one inning. It happened in the bottom of the sixth inning when both Conor Jackson (his second of the year) and Scott Sizemore (his second of the year as well) homered to score the final of the A’s seven runs. The second home run of the inning knocked out Diamondbacks starter Ian Kennedy, who had a rough day surrendering seven earned runs on ten hits while walking two and K’ing six on a day when he was one of the five NL players one the ballot to be the final representative to the All-Star Game. It is clear to everyone he didn’t make a sterling case in Oakland for inclusion.

On the opposite side of the ledger was a pitcher whose ticket to Phoenix had already been punched – Gio Gonzalez. Gonzalez proved he belonged, throwing seven innings of one earned run baseball on five hits, while walking three and striking out seven. The lone run coming when Xavier Nady singled and scored Chris Young in the fourth. Fortunately for Gio, the A’s picked him right back up in the bottom half, when a David DeJesus double scored Coco Crisp and Hideki Matsui to give the A’s back the lead they would never relinquish guaranteeing Gonzalez his eighth win of 2011.

After Gio came out of the game the inconsistent play of Michael Wuertz returned as he didn’t get an out pitching in the top of the eighth allowing a hit and two walks. One of those runners (Justin Upton who led off with a double) came around to score later in the inning on a Sean Burroughs single with Joey Devine pitching and the bases loaded, fortunately Hideki Matsui and his cannon in left got Chris Young who failed to slide a la Jeremy Giambi making for an easy tag by Landon Powell and ending most hopes of a Diamondbacks rally. Despite it not being a save situation, Andrew Bailey pitched a perfect ninth.

Good game for the A’s. They win the series and really needed to after a disappointing series with the Marlins. The A’s finish the interleague schedule with a 8-10 record which is really quite disappointing as aside from the Phillies and Giants they didn’t face particularly tough interleague opponents in the Mets, Marlins or Diamondbacks. Posting a 4-5 record versus the Phils and Giants and an equal 4-5 record against the far inferior trio of New York, Florida and Arizona. One can argue Arizona should be considered strong on par with the Phillies and Giants which just makes the 2-4 record against the Mets and Marlins even more problematic. Thankfully though no more National League opponents – until the World Series at least (har har har)!

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