Recap: Rangers @ A’s Game 160
With tonight’s 4-3 win over the Rangers the A’s have clinched a playoff spot for the first time since 2006 and move within one game of the AL West leading Rangers meaning that with a sweep the A’s could conceivably win the division. Furthermore they also moved into a tie with Baltimore for the wild card home field advantage as they improved their record to 92-68. What an exciting year for the A’s and who would have expected it?
- Jarrod Parker, the A’s best pitcher this year who started the season with Sacramento along with so many of his teammates (though some even started their years in Midland or even Stockton!) got the win in the biggest game the A’s played in a long time. Parker, who leads A’s hurlers with 3.7 WAR went six innings, allowing three earned runs, on six hits (including solo shots to both Michael Young and Mike Napoli), while walking two and striking out six. Parker will end the year with a 13-8 record, 3.47 ERA, 3.44 FIP, 7.0 K/9, 3.1 BB/9 and 0.6 HR/9 in his 181 1/3 innings. He has been simply amazing.
- Parker gave way to what is becoming a great trio for closing down close ballgames, Sean Doolittle, Ryan Cook and Grant Balfour. Doolittle did what he does, throwing an inning and striking out one which hurt his still amazing 11.5 K/9. Ryan Cook, who came over to the A’s along with Parker in what is looking like a clear unquestioned win in their trade that sent Trevor Cahill to the desert, also threw an inning accumulating a strikeout. The holds represented Doolittle’s 16th and Cook’s 19th. Or for what I think is a more important stat is represented their 21st and 34th shutdowns on the year. Balfour pitched a magnificent ninth striking out all three hitters he faced on twelve pitches for his 23rd save or 36th shutdown.
- The A’s offense got started early scoring two first inning runs when Josh Reddick singled home Coco Crisp and then a balk while Stephen Drew was at the plate, scored Chris Carter. Crisp for the day went 2-for-4 with a double and his 39th stolen base, Reddick meanwhile went 1-for-4 with a K.
- In the bottom of the fifth the A’s tacked on their other two runs as Coco doubled home Adam Rosales and later in the inning pinch-hitter Brandon Moss sacrifice flyed Crisp home to give the A’s their four runs.
- Jonny Gomes was the only other Athletic aside from Crisp with a multi-hit game as he went 2-for-4 with a K.