Home MLBOakland A's UK Thank you for the A’s: When You Don’t Want To See The Score

Thank you for the A’s: When You Don’t Want To See The Score

by Matt Smith

“More fun when you win” was the title of my last Oakland A’s column.

I should have known I was tempting fate with that.

I wrote that at the apex of a five-game winning streak and it was immediately followed by a five-game losing streak.

The A’s have lost 9 of their last 11 games heading into their Saturday night game against the Detroit Tigers.

And that’s the opposite of fun.

The MLB season can be a grind for fans as much as it is for the players when things are not going well. The A’s have been playing in the early hours, UK time, most days over the past two weeks and I always feel this adds to the disappointment. If you’re watching live you can at least come to terms with another loss as it happens. When checking the score is the first thing you do in the morning, well, it starts getting a bit demoralising when your day starts with yet another L.

This past week I reverted into self-protection mode, preparing myself for another loss as MLB At Bat updated rather than see hopes of an upturn dashed.

Losing the first two games of our series against the Minnesota Twins was especially disappointing, setting up a day-game on Thursday with the potential of the A’s being swept. That’s never a good sign, but particularly against a team that’s unlikely to be in the play-off hunt later in the season.

The game started at 18.10 and I got home from work at just before 19.00 so it was with some trepidation that I logged onto MLB.TV. Thankfully the A’s were 4-2 up at that point and went onto win 8-5, with Jharel Cotton’s change-up in mind-boggling form and Ryon Healy poking his fourth home run of 2017 into the seats.

Hopes that this win might set up a morale-boosting six-game homestand started badly last night as Michael Fulmer shut the A’s down and Andrew Triggs took the loss. That still leaves two games left to win the series though and then a chance to avenge the Angels’ recent three-game sweep of us at the start of next week.

Wins on the field feel all the more important, whilst all the harder to obtain, with A’s players dropping like flies.

The baseball gods decided that if you were a left-handed pitcher for the A’s called Sean then you needed a stint on the Disabled List. Manaea and Doolittle are the latest two A’s on the shelf, joined by catcher Josh Phegley after another concussion, but we did at least have Sonny days back again as Sonny Gray finally made his season debut on Tuesday night. He gave up three home runs in a loss, but looked sharp otherwise in what was a very encouraging performance.

The ‘Sonny with Strike-outs’ sign will be out on full view at the Coliseum on Sunday when he starts the day-game series finale. Hopefully Jesse Hahn can help the A’s win tonight so that Gray has the opportunity to pitch us to a series win rather than doing a salvage job.

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