Recap: Dodgers @ A’s Game 68
The Dodgers came to Oakland this evening. Leading the National League West, they looked to have a more 1988 World Series type rematch with a little less of a 1974 vibe. The A’s were 3-0 winners again showing they can keep up with anyone. Onto the notes.
- The story of this game was simply the performance of Brandon McCarthy. Entering the game, Don Mattingly had his Dodgers lineup chalk full of left-handed hitters (seven in all) and McCarthy had a .315/.374/.475 slash line against them in 2012. Despite that across seven innings he allowed just two hits (singles to Tony Gwynn, Jr and Andre Ethier), set down five Dodgers on strikes and walked just one. He threw an amazingly efficient 81 pitches with 56 of them going for strikes.
- Set up man Grant Balfour, threw an inning of one walk, one strikeout work while Ryan Cook did the same to claim his fourth save on the year. It is incredible the transformation of Cook from sort of an afterthought to begin the year to a shutdown eighth inning guy to now a closer. Nearly a seamless transition and it is fun to witness.
- All the offense Oakland needed in this one came in the first inning. Coco Crisp led off with a double, Jemile Weeks walked and then Seth Smith singled and aided more so by a Gwynn error that let the ball get past him than anything Smith did that allowed two runs to score. Jonny Gomes would drive in another in the first to give us the final score.
- The A’s did a magnificent job taking pitches and more importantly drawing walks. Dodgers starter Aaron Harang allowed eight walks in just three and two-thirds innings and then Dodgers relievers added two more free passes. Weeks drew three walks in the game, while Crisp drew two. Only Brandon Inge and Cliff Pennington failed to reach via a free pass.
- The A’s didn’t really capitalize on all these walks. They hit a miserable, 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position and stranded a very high twelve baserunners. The biggest culprit really being Josh Reddick who went 0-for-4 with four strikeouts, stranding six runners.
- Crisp ran all over the Dodgers getting three steals in the ballgame. Also in the running game Dodgers reliever Shawn Tolleson had a magnificent pickoff of a leaning Pennington in the eighth as the A’s looked to add some insurance runs and capitalize on a James Loney error.
- During the game it was announced by the A’s that Andrew Carignan underwent surgery on his right elbow officially ending his 2012 season. The surgery was performed by Dr. David Altchek who is the medical director for the New York Mets, which begs the question why don’t we have medical directors good enough to perform our players’ surgeries?