The A’s keep finding ways to get out of tough situations and come up with dramatic wins. The next in this impressive line of victories came over the Los Angeles Angels, beating their division rivals 10-9 thanks to Josh Donaldson hitting and RBI double in the 11th inning.
In a game filled with momentum swings and lead changes, the best team in the AL according to their record (10-4) prevailed thanks to some impressive hitting and Jim Johnson getting on the mound to finally put consecutive solid innings and keep the Angels’ bats at bay. Both teams had relievers blowing saves: Joe Smith for the Angels and Sean Doolittle going through the same thing for the A’s.
Kole Calhoun (3rd of the season) and Mike Trout (5th of 2014) hit home runs for the Angels, while the A’s didn’t have a single one going deep. Seven different players finishing with at least one RBI, including two for Eric Sogard and Derek Norris with a strong pinch hitting performance. Jed Lowrie, Donaldson and Craig Gentry finished with three hits each in the game, as the A’s finished with 16-of-46 at bat.
Albert Pujols finished with 0-for-5, ending his 10-game hitting streak. Calhoun and Trout were the hot hands which is quite normal, especially for Trout, who is hitting a .317 to start the season. Both starting pitchers had a rough performance, especially Oakland’s Dan Straily who didn’t complete four innings, giving up seven hits and six runs including a home run by Calhoun. Garrett Richards had seven innings for the A’s, allowing eight hits and five runs, striking out five batters.
It seemed like it was only a matter of time before we put a run across and figured out how to get a win. We’ve been playing great this whole road trip, and we scrapped and clawed and came from behind. There’s a sense in this clubhouse that if the game is close or tied, we’re going to figure out a way to get it done. Who’s it going to be this time? It was one of the first times all year that our starting pitching struggled. The ninth inning happened, but we were able to come back and get it. Our pitching and defense have been doing really well this year, and tonight it was our offense picking them up. It felt like three different games. We got behind early and came roaring back again, but give them credit. The momentum shifts go back and forth, and it comes down to will.