Wednesday, June 14, 2006
[initial partial post]
In 25 words or less: If you for some reason were asleep during the ninth inning, you missed the most infuriating part of the game.
This one featured Jamie Moyer going up against Joe Blanton. Mark Kotsay came into the game 18-for-30 with a homer against Moyer. Four other hitters in the Oakland lineup also came in with batting averages over .300 against Moyer. Miraculously, Jeremy Reed made his fourth straight start in centerfield. The Mariners looked to make it ten of twelve wins overall. However, the Mariners were to play Oakland. In Oakland. Where they usually suck.
Ichiro swiped at a 2-2 pitch, grounding out to second. Adrian Beltre chopped an 0-2 pitch to a charging Crosby at short, who barehanded the ball and threw to first. Jose Lopez whiffed on a 1-2 fastball over the inside corner. Blanton threw 14 pitches.
Mark Kotsay popped the second pitch to left. Jason Kendall popped a 2-2 pitch to Betancourt on the infield grass. Eric Chavez flew out high to Beltre on the foul side of the third-base line on the second pitch. Moyer threw nine pitches.
Raul Ibañez grounded hard to first on the second pitch. Richie Sexson was up 3-0 before getting under the full-count pitch and flying out high to deep center. Carl Everett rolled a 2-0 pitch up the middle for a single. Kenji Johjima rolled the first pitch to short for a 6-4 force on Everett at second. Blanton threw 12 pitches and had 26 through two.
Frank Thomas inadvertently swung and bounced to short, where Betancourt shorthopped it and threw to first. Bobby Crosby walked on a full-count pitch low and away, the eighth pitch of the at-bat. Milton Bradley popped the second pitch high to Lopez on the infield dirt. Nick Swisher popped the second pitch foul down the rightfield line where Lopez slid and had the ball go in and out of his glove. After taking a 2-2 pitch barely inside (a pitch Moyer needs), Swisher knocked a full-count pitch into right for a single, moving Crosby to third. Jay Payton rolled an 0-2 pitch to second for a 4-6 force on Swisher. Moyer threw 24 pitches and had 33 through two.
Jeremy Reed was ahead 2-0 and later bounced to first. Yuniesky Betancourt chopped out to third. Ichiro flew out to the track in right on a 3-0 pitch as Bradley got turned around and had to find the ball before catching it. Blanton threw 11 pitches and had 37 through three.
Marco Scutaro got ahead 2-0 and eventually ripped a single into left, but his mistake was trying to stretch it into a double and was thrown out by about ten feet (Oakland television crew thought Scutaro may have thought the ball got past Ibañez). Kotsay rolled out to second. Kendall flew out to right. Moyer threw 19 pitches and had 43 through three.
Beltre grounded hard to third on the first pitch. Lopez lined out to right on a 1-2 pitch. Ibañez popped the second pitch high to Chavez in foul ground on the right side. Blanton threw nine pitches and had 46 through four.
Chavez whiffed on an 0-2 change away. Thomas grounded up the middle to Lopez. Crosby knocked the first pitch down the leftfield line for a double. Bradley popped the first pitch to Reed in shallow center. Moyer threw nine pitches and had 52 through four.
Sexson got ahead 2-0 before rolling a 2-2 pitch to short. Everett flew out to Kotsay in shallow center on the first pitch. Johjima popped the second pitch to left. Blanton threw eight pitches and had 54 through five.
Swisher tapped a full-count pitch to the mound. Payton got ahead 2-0 before lining a homer just left of the cement staircase behind the leftfield wall. It was his first homer against a lefty this season.
»» ATHLETICS 1, MARINERS 0
Scutaro drilled a 2-0 pitch into left for a single. Kotsay bounced the first pitch past a diving Sexson and into right for a single, moving Scutaro to second. Kendall took an 0-2 fastball across the inside corner. Chavez whiffed on yet another 0-2 change away. Moyer threw 21 pitches and had 73 through five.
Reed slapped the second pitch to left, where Payton ran back and reached to make the catch at the track. Betancourt rolled the second pitch to short. Ichiro dug for a 1-2 pitch, but lined to a charging Kotsay in center. Blanton threw eight pitches and had 62 through six.
Thomas fell behind 0-2 and popped a 1-2 pitch to the bullpen mounds on the right side, where Sexson had somehwat of a beat on it, but it dropped. Thomas ended up flying out to center on a full count. Crosby took a full-count pitch over the outside corner. Bradley bounced the second pitch to short. Moyer threw 17 pitches and had 90 through six.
Beltre took a full-count fastball down the pipe, a tiny bit low if there's any bone about it. Lopez bounced the second pitch to Crosby up the middle, who had the ball go off the end of his glove, but he probably wouldn't have had Lopez anyway. Ibañez popped the second pitch high to Crosby on the outfield grass. Sexson flew out high to right on a 1-2 pitch. Blanton threw 13 pitches and had 75 through seven.
Swisher smacked the second pitch through the left side for a single. Payton dumped the second pitch into shallow right for a single, moving Swisher to third. Scutaro walked on a full-count pitch in the dirt to load the bases with nobody out.
George Sherrill came in for Moyer. Kotsay bounced to Sexson at first, who threw home for the force as the bases remained loaded. Kendall knocked a 2-0 pitch into right for a single, scoring Payton and keeping the bases loaded.
»» ATHLETICS 2, MARINERS 0
Chavez grounded the first pitch to second for a 4-6-3 double play.
Moyer's line: 6 innings, 2 runs, 8 hits, 2 walks, 4 strikeouts, 100 pitches (62 strikes)
Sherrill's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 7 pitches (4 strikes)
Everett flew out to center on the second pitch. Johjima shot the second pitch down the leftfield line for a long single after a strong Payton throw from left. Reed was up 3-0 and ended up popping the 3-1 pitch to Kotsay in deep leftcenter. Betancourt popped to Swisher running in foul ground on the right side. Blanton threw 13 pitches and had 88 through eight.
Julio Mateo came in for Sherrill. Thomas got ahead 2-0 before dumping a 2-2 pitch into shallow right for a single. Antonio Perez came in to run for Thomas. Crosby flew out to a running Ichiro in rightcenter as Perez threw to first. Bradley grounded to first for a 3-6-3 double play.
Mateo's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 7 pitches (5 strikes)
Ichiro punched a single through the right side. Pitching coach Curt Young came to the mound for a visit. Beltre clubbed the first pitch into the leftfield corner for a double, moving Ichiro to third.
Huston Street came in for Blanton. Lopez took the second pitch off the front of his jersey puffing (think baggy and leaning) over his chest, loading the bases. Ibañez took an 0-2 pitch over the inner half. Sexson whiffed on a 1-2 pitch way outside, failing to check his swing. Everett popped the first pitch to left.
Blanton's line: 8 innings, 0 runs, 5 hits, 0 walks, 2 strikeouts, 92 pitches (61 strikes)
Street's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 2 strikeouts, 10 pitches (8 strikes)
I guess I couldn't pick Jamie Moyer here since he left the game with the bases loaded and nobody out. As much as I want to see George Sherrill in the game to face more than one hitter, it was just my luck that the one time he faces a righty (second hitter), that hitter (Jason Kendall) puts the second run across for Oakland. What really surprised me was that Hargrove wasn't the usual Hargrove and didn't pull Sherrill immediately after he'd gotten the ground ball from Mark Kotsay. Then again, the righty he had warming up in the bullpen at that point was Julio Mateo instead of, say, Rafael Soriano, who I would have loved to send up in that situation. Still, this whole paragraph is supposed to somehow relate to Ichiro. Ichiro didn't strike out. He didn't leave anyone on the basepaths. Oddly, his only hit was the one that led off the ninth and was the first of three plays that loaded the bases with nobody out for the Mariners before the middle third of the Mariner lineup did absolutely nothing, not even mustering as much as a fly ball until there were already two out, i.e., Ibañez and Sexson didn't put the ball in play.
Goat: Raul Ibañez.
It'd be way easier to harp on Sexson here, but I won't. Ibañez was up with the bases loaded and nobody out in the ninth, and he fouled off two pitches before taking the third over the inside corner from Huston Street, who had just come in from the bullpen. Street's tough, sure, but Ibañez is also the number-four hitter and the team relies on him to be a consistent hitter. It's hard to harp on him for having a .342 June thus far, but he's 2-for-16 (.125) the past four games. Of course, it's weird when you consider the two hits were home runs. In that aspect, his game log lately looks a lot like Sexson's, except not quite as sharply. Sexson has nine hits this month, but four are homers and one is a double. He has 13 RBIs in June with the nine hits. Back to Ibañez, though, the 2-for-16 stretch contains two hitless games which are his only hitless games of the month. The Saturday game in Anaheim broke his eight-game hitting streak. On an odd note, Ibañez had a .301 May and had a .237 June, though it kinda didn't seem like it. He had hitting streaks of seven, six, and three games, and he had nine hitless games. Anyway, with the bases loaded and nobody out in this game, they needed him.
Yr W-L Pct GB Stk
2001 52-14 .788 -- W3
2003 44-22 .667 8 L1
2002 41-25 .621 11 W2
2000 37-29 .561 15 W2
2006 31-35 .470 21 L1
2005 30-36 .455 22 W2
2004 28-38 .424 24 W3
LINEUP SINCE THE TWEAK (May 30th)
Ichiro 31-for-60 (.517), 3 doubles, 1 triple, 2 homers, 6 RBIs, 4 walks, 2 strikeouts
Beltre 16-for-58 (.276), 3 doubles, 3 homers, 9 RBIs, 4 walks, 11 strikeouts
Lopez 13-for-54 (.241), 7 doubles, 1 homer, 10 RBIs, 5 walks, 11 strikeouts
Ibañez 15-for-43 (.349), 2 doubles, 5 homers, 17 RBIs, 8 walks, 6 strikeouts
Sexson 10-for-51 (.196), 1 double, 4 homers, 15 RBIs, 3 walks, 14 strikeouts
Everett 9-for-42 (.214), 1 homer, 2 RBIs, 3 walks, 10 strikeouts
Johjima 12-for-43 (.279), 4 doubles, 2 RBIs, 1 walk, 4 strikeouts
Reed 9-for-32 (.281), 1 double, 1 homer, 2 RBI, 3 walks, 2 strikeouts
Betancourt 14-for-47 (.298), 2 doubles, 1 triple, 1 homer, 5 RBIs, 2 walks, 3 strikeouts
Piñeiro. Haren. Tonight.