I said recently the Oakland Athletics were sugring, taking three of four from the New York Yankees and then went on to sweep the Detroit Tigers. It looked like a surge, but wasn’t. It stopped when the team arrived in Boston.
The Red Sox completed a three game sweep of the A’s over the weekend, capping it off a seven-run eighth inning in the final game of the series on Sunday.
The first two games of the series were somewhat mundane, however in Monday’s 4-2 loss, the A’s did bring the go-ahead run to the plate. Josh Phegley hit a towering drive that, had it been a few feet would have been a game-tying homerun. He ended up with a double.
Brett Lawrie singled to put guys on second and third, bringing up the go ahead run with two outs. The A’s hopes of winning their second game against the Red Sox ended with Mark Canha flying out to left.
As previously noted the real excitement in the series came in he bottom of the eighth inning on Sunday. The A’s were up 4-0 behind a spectacular performane by rookie starter Kendall Graveman. Gravemen was taken out with one out in the inning after allowing a solo shot to Rusney Castillo.
The A’s should have kept Graveman in (althought I don’t know what his pitch count was at thee time) because the A’s bullpen struggles continued.
Pomeranz allowed a sacrifice fly off of the bat of David Ortiz that plated Holt. So Mevin decided to go with Tyler Clippard who struck out my Mike Napoli to start his outing but then he allowed a single to Pablo Sandoval, a run-scoring double to Xander Bogaerts and a single to Castillo (yes, the Red Sox batted around) that allowed Sanoval to score.
At this point the A’s’ 4-0 lead had been erased as the Red Sox scored seven runs in the bottom of the eighth and the A’s were unable to comeback with their final three at-bats.
After all was said and done the Athletics were swept, their momentum hopefully not stopped, but a sweep can stop momentum. On the other hand it can inspire a team as well.
We’ll find out Tuesday in Oakland, as the A’s take on the AL West second place Texas Rangers.