In a standard nine-inning baseball game there is the possibility of leaving 27 men on base. Leaving the bases loaded in 9 consecutive innings means:
3 LOB X 9 innings = 27
The A's left 20 on base last night and only scored 4 runs.
Well, that's kind of a misnomer. If the bases are loaded with nobody out and the next three batters get out without advancing the runners, the box score showed that there were 9 runners left on by those three hitters.
In actuality the A's left 8, not including the two in the bottom of the 9th. The A's didn't get runners on in the 4th, 6th or 8th. They left one on in the 1st, one in the 2nd, two in the 3rd, three in the 5th and one in the 7th.
In other words, the Angels pitchers did a great job of shutting down the A's or the Oakland clubhouse attendant better start buying bulletproof shoes for the A's. They have continually shot themselves in the foot against the Angels in the past week. With Mulder, Zito and Hudson pitching the next three days it would be beneficial if the A's could stake the Big Three to decent leads so that they can get their 7 innings in and get out.
RALLY MIGGI STRIKES, AGAIN
Lost in all of this hubbub and rhubarb is Miggi singling in a run in the bottom of the 9th to win the game. Miggi got a single in the 1st, struck out with two on in the 3rd, struck out with the bases loaded in the 5th, popped out with one on in the 7th and hit the single with two on in the 9th.
When there were runners on first and second with one out in the 9th most of the staff was pushing for the double steal. Durham was on second and Eric Brynes could/should have been pinch running for Justice on first. If the throw goes down to third, Durham most likely steals the base or opens the possibility of the throw being errant or bouncing off Glaus or Durham. Even if Durham is thrown out, Byrnes easily advances to second. If the throw goes down to second, Durham is at third and opens the possibility of scoring on a passed ball or ground out. If Byrnes is picked off, there is still the possibility of scoring on a passed ball, wild pitch or base hit.
Further, if the pitcher lets the ball "throw-thru", Durham could easily keep on running and score from second on a double steal. Yes, he's that fast and if Byrnes is instructed to take out whoever covers second a lot of time can be wasted showing the ball to the umpire, getting untangled from Byrnes and firing to the plate.
Just a thought.
THE CURIOUS CASE OF COREY LIDLE
There have been rumors of Cory Lidle not being part of the rotation during the playoffs and using him as a long man if necessary. Hogwash. Cory Lidle deserves to pitch in the playoffs and any rumors about him being traded next year are next rumors.
Cory got 12 ground ball outs of the 21 outs he recorded last night.
We really don't see any justification of putting Lidle in the pen. We say you jump off that bridge when you come to it. When the playoff picture is settled, we?ll review the issue. Until then, it's a non-issue.
The Angels announced that they will start Jarrod Washburn on three days rest tonight against Mark Mulder. We view this as a mistake. Washburn had a rough week last week dodging a sexual assault case with a minor. Throwing him to the A's might work for one start, but if he doesn?t get four or even five days rest after this start he might be only 80-90% effective the rest of the season. Washburn is put in a position to sink or swim, the Angels have all but assured themselves of a place in the playoffs, wasting Washburn to one up the A's is pointless.
The A's will go with their usual rotation until Friday. Ted Lilly apparently has a blister on his pitching hand and may not be able to go. Eeyore would simply pick up the slack and Mike Fyhrie would be the long man. It's Texas, after all, and you're going to need long men who are used to giving up some runs. We would rather see a few guys with 4.50 ERA's go into Texas than sub-3.00 ERA pitchers. The higher ERA guys are used to giving up more runs and might be able to maintain focus rather than a lower ERA guy forcing his pitches and continually getting hammered.
Again, just a thought.