Live Blogging: A’s @ Orioles Game 62
9:31PM EDT: Koji Uehara gets 1-2-3 ninth to secure the 4-0 Orioles win. Guillermo Moscoso, backed by zero offense takes the loss in this one, despite keeping his team in contention. The A’s have now lost eight straight and this season is rapidly looking like a lost cause especially with the mounting injuries. Geren needs to go. I was happy to see that Jayson Stark at least agrees with me writing earlier this afternoon:
“As the A’s losing streak hits seven, it’s safe to say that Bob Geren has zoomed to the top of the ‘First Manager to Get Fired’ charts.”
In that same article Stark wrote that assuming the A’s are deadline sellers,
“One scout who covered [the A's] recently says Josh Willingham is the one Oakland player he’d recommend to his club. So what about Brian Fuentes? ‘Tough guy to trust.’ David DeJesus? ‘Not catching up with good fastballs at all.’ Hideki Matsui? ‘Looks done.’”
Interesting because I think the quote on Matsui could apply to the 2011 A’s as well: Looks done.
9:20PM EDT: What the hell is Bob Geren doing? Why is Bobby Cramer pitching? We need a starter on Friday to fill Brett Anderson‘s spot and it seemed natural that Cramer is that guy. I just don’t understand what the plan is here. Have we completely given up on this year? If they want to call up someone like Travis Banwart or Graham Godfrey to fill that spot on Friday, why bother calling up Cramer now at all? Save money on all this airfare and put it into developing some hitters or something.
9:17PM EDT: The A’s offense looked particularly punchless in that 1-2-3 top of the eighth. Jeremy Accardo gets the A’s (last I checked a Major League franchise) out on eight pitches – Weeks (1), Barton (3), DeJesus (4).
9:13PM EDT: So sort of a Jekyll and Hyde type of inning for Breslow with the three strikeouts but also with the two-hit run scoring damage. As I commented earlier, Breslow does well with both sides of the plate. At the end of this outing he actually has a reverse platoon:
9:08PM EDT: RBI double for Mark Reynolds scores Felix Pie (pinch-running for Luke Scott on board with a double) and it extends the O’s lead to 4-0. Looks like the A’s are going to go eight straight sans a victory.
9:05PM EDT: Craig Breslow comes in and strikes out the first hitter he sees in Matt Wieters. I’ve been real happy with how Breslow has pitched as of late. Unlike a lot of lefty relievers he is capable against both sides of the plate.
8:57PM EDT: Hideki Matsui with another weak ground out. Just no power there it seems. He also looks to be flailing a lot at the plate. While there is clear marketing power to Matsui, the reality is he hasn’t improved A’s attendance this year, and with him so sparingly in the lineup is unlikely to do so. I don’t think he has much trade value, but I wouldn’t be surprised if perhaps the Yankees took a gamble on him and gave us little to nothing in return (which is about all he is worth at this point). I wonder however if this progresses if the A’s would consider DFA’ing him and giving a shot to Chris Carter or Michael Taylor? Carter is currently on a rehab stint in Stockton with the Ports, I didn’t know AAA guys had rehab stints with A+ clubs but you learn something new everyday. Interestingly the Ports are playing the San Jose Giants, so on Monday night Carter got a single off of another rehabbing player, Giants pitcher Barry Zito.
8:50PM EDT: Another solo dinger – off of a hanging slider from Wuertz. He just has been off this year after a good start he has struggled. I think if anyone is expendable in our bullpen it is him. Of course, if you’re trading guys, you get what you trade for, getting rid of struggling pitchers gets you a struggling or middling guy in return. But I just think he hasn’t for whatever reason been able to get that slider to snap like it has in the past. So with the bomb, Adam Jones (his eighth) makes it 3-0 Orioles, a lead that is looking ever more insurmountable as this game progresses.
8:47PM EDT: New pitcher for Oakland too. Not surprising that even though Moscoso’s pitch count is only at 78 pitches – that given his two outings in Boston over the weekend – he’d be out early. Right now he is on the hook for a loss, yet given the lack of A’s run support he actually leaves this game with a WPA of +.007 despite trailing. Michael Wuertz is the new A’s pitcher.
8:40PM EDT: The O’s have been irrelevant for so long at times it seems like they’re an organization just going through the motions, playing the game, hitting etc. But it does say something that as Buck Showalter walks to the mound he had Rapada in there just to face the left-handed hitting Daric Barton and David DeJesus. It shows the O’s are serious about winning, playing matchups etc. It may be a small thing, but as he went out to the mound I thought, this is ridiculous, a lefty-specialist to face those guys in June? But then it made me think this is a seachange in the culture of the Orioles and them playing games with purpose. Or maybe it is none of those things because I seldom watch the Orioles. Jeremy Accardo is next up for the O’s.
8:36PM EDT: The Orioles pen comes out, I wonder if Chris Jakubauskas got injured care of that Pennington smash because he was only at 80 pitches – then again it was his first start. Solid outing for him, five innings, five K’s, one walk and three hits allowed. Clay Rapada comes in now for the O’s, he has not been sharp this year.
8:33PM EDT: Another 5-4-3 double play, this time victimizing Ryan Adams so that funny 100% strand rate is still in tact for Moscoso. He just seems to do real well with guys on base as his strand rate improves to 80.2% on the year now.
8:25PM EDT: Luke Scott with a home run for the O’s to double their lead to 2-0. That ball was hit deep to right, well out of the stadium walkway towards that warehouse they have out in right at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. So interestingly Guillermo Moscoso, has a 100% strand rate as he has been victimized just by the two solo home runs, first to Hardy and now to Scott.
8:19PM EDT: Jakubauskas gets nailed in the left ankle by a Cliff Pennington liner, rough one to be hit on for him as that is the ankle that shoulders most of his weight. Last season he was hit in the head with a line drive by Lance Berkman while pitching for the Pittsburgh Pirates suffering a concussion. Can’t beat easy to recover from something like that and still have the cojones to come out and pitch again. Looks like he will stay in this one though and is thankfully alright. Hate to see someone get hurt, even if he is dominating your club.
8:08PM EDT: 5-4-3 double play helps out Moscoso big time. Derrek Lee just looks so slow running so I don’t get how he possibly could have so many stolen bases as I touched upon yesterday.
8:05PM EDT: Moscoso has settled down since his second pitch of the game home run that he allowed. But a lead off single to Adam Jones could spell trouble with the heart of Baltimore’s lineup due up. The Orioles lineup is pretty solid top-to-bottom, sort of underrated because well it is the Orioles and they’re in a division with some far more vaunted lineups, but realistically this isn’t a terrible lineup and can do some damage. I hate to say it but I’d probably take them over our lineup right now. Moscoso hasn’t been bad at mitigating damage thus far in his time in Oakland so let’s see what he does.
7:54PM EDT: DeJesus just missed tying this game up. After complaining about the A’s inability to put anything together including not even getting a single walk in this ballgame, Barton gets a lead off walk. But DeJesus had that ball maybe an inch off the line in right field where despite Nick Markakis‘ arm, I think it could’ve scored Daric, or at least created a pretty good scoring opportunity with the heart of the order due up.
7:50PM EDT: So coming into the top of the fourth and despite facing a middling pitcher the A’s have put next to nothing together just one hit Kurt Suzuki‘s double in the second, not even managing a walk while accumulating two strikeouts against Jakubauskas. As much as we as A’s fans have been upset with the loss of pitchers, despite them pitching oftentimes very well, we still generated so little offense it didn’t make a difference. This game so far is but another example.
7:28PM EDT: Hideki Matsui with a runner in scoring position, grounds out – again. Seems like this happens far too often. The rest of the team is hitting well with two outs lately, but Matsui just is struggling so much this year. I think his career is done – he just doesn’t show any signs of warming up or improving.
7:14PM EDT: J.J. Hardy homers on the second pitch of the ballgame – not a good way to stop a seven game losing streak if you ask me… Orioles 1, Athletics 0.
7:01PM EDT: Excitement today for A’s fans as they get to see the MLB debut of Jemile Weeks today who starts at second base and leads off for the Green and Gold. Another new Athletic is in the clubhouse as well and that is LHP Bobby Cramer as the A’s today put both Brett Anderson and Mark Ellis on the 15-day disabled list. The pitching matchup today, as the A’s look to break a seven-game losing streak, is Guillermo Moscoso up against Chris Jakubauskas (say that three times fast). Little surprised to see Moscoso going today as with the two relief appearances in Boston and Josh Outman‘s short appearance at Fenway on Friday night, I thought Outman would’ve been a better bet to go tonight swapping spots with Moscoso, but alas I am incorrect (or I am in fact correct and will be proven so tonight that that would’ve been the better move). Jakubauskas comes in with a 6.32 FIP as he comes in to make his first start of 2011 which is pretty well inline with his 6.39 ERA. He doesn’t do too much, and doesn’t look like he’ll be a particularly great pitcher so I am not sure exactly what the Orioles see in him, or just how bare their pitching cupboard must be for him to be with the big club. Interesting notes regarding the A’s lineup, Hideki Matsui is back and hitting seventh. Last year the Angels hit Matsui seventh against left-handed hitters – Jakubauskas is right-handed. How his stock has fallen. Barton continues to hit second (not a fan) and Scott Sizemore makes the start at third base tonight and Ryan Sweeney finds himself in center.