A’s lose opener to Angels

By: Malaika Bobino

Oakland, CA – This wasn’t the start the A’s were looking for.  After a tough road trip they returned home and faced their division rivals.  The Los Angeles Angels who currently hold last place in the American League West played like they were atop the division.

The Angels 8-3 victory over Oakland looked like an offensive clinic.  Dan Straily nor the bullpen could contain their at-bats and provided no defense of their own.  Los Angeles scored seven runs over two innings and knocked Straily out of the game after 4.1 frames.

“I felt like up until that point I was commanding everything pretty good, and then pretty much out of nowhere, I wasn’t able to correct myself, and it cost us the game,” said Dan.

In his worst outing of the month, he allowed seven hits, walked two, struck out five and threw a wild pitch.  It was the fifth inning that got away from him.  The Angels scored four runs and stayed on base much of the frame.

Mark Trout tied the game 2-2 with a sacrifice fly.  An RBI single from Josh Hamilton and a two-run double from Mark Trumbo sparked the offense and Los Angeles never looked back.   In the sixth they added on three more runs with five singles and a wild pitch.

“We had a great approach with runners in scoring position tonight,” said Angels manager Mike Scioscia.  “A lot of hits just kept on going.  We’ve had issues with guys in scoring position.  We’ve been setting the table, we just haven’t cashed in the way we need to.  Tonight we did.”

The A’s had an opportunity in the second when they had runners on first and second but failed to score.  Yoenis Cespedes leadoff the fourth with a free pass.  He stole second and tied the game 1-1 on a wild pitch by C.J Wilson.  That was the only run until Derek Norris scored the final two runs with a RBI single and home run.

Wilson was outstanding in keeping Oakland’s bats calm through seven innings.  He yielded five hits, gave up three runs, one home run, walked three and struck out six.  C.J. came into tonight’s game with a ERA 1.69 in his last seven starts and had just thrown 8 1/3 scoreless innings against the A’s this past Saturday.

“He started pounding the strike zone a little more once they got the lead,” Oakland’s manager Bob Melvin said.  “I think he realized, too, that he had to throw some more strikes, and he did.  We tried to take advantage of some of those first-pitch strikes and hit a predictable fastball.”

Los Angeles has won three of their last four games against the A’s.  Their eight runs matched the most runs scored at O.co Coliseum since April 29.  But unfortunately, for the Angels, they are still ten games behind the first place A’s.  Despite the loss they still lead the Texas Rangers by three games.

“Unfortunately, you have one of these nights every now and again where the game gets blown out of the water, and it’s tough to come back from that” said catcher Derek.