Entering the series against the New York Yankees, the expectations surrounding Oakland were kept low, as the team entered the series having lost ten straight against the Bronx Bombers. But to the surprise to some, the A’s did manage to squeeze out a win during the three game set in New York.
On Sunday, the team could have notched a series win over the Yankees, but the team faltered mid-way through the game. Uncharacteristically, however, it was Oakland’s pitching that hurt them this series. The offense, which has been a major problem for the team all season long, actually played exceptionally well during the series.
Oakland put up a total of 16 runs during the three game series, but the green-and-gold were ultimately outscored by the Yankees 27-16. Trevor Cahill and Gio Gonzalez were bombed by the Bronx Bombers, and the duo gave up a total of 16 runs. Cahill was torched for 10, while Gonzalez fell in the rubber match on Sunday by allowing six runs to cross the plate.
Here are few notes and thoughts about this series in New York:
- Both pitchers are considered rising stars, but based on their starts in New York, the two still have a lot of growing up to do. Cahill has been decent this year, and Gonzalez has emerged as Oakland’s top starter. But games like this, especially those in New York, are big tests for young pitchers in this league. Can either of these two pitchers be considered “real” aces if they can’t beat or solve challenging offenses?
- Rich Harden, acquired in the offseason, has made just four starts this season, but he’s supposedly garnered some interest from the Boston Red Sox. Harden, 29, does have a lengthy injury history, but he hasn’t looked all that bad this year. In his most recent start, he went 5.1 innings allowing two runs while striking out six and picking up his second win of the season. On the year, Harden is 2-1 with a 4.63 ERA and 23 strikeouts in 23.1 innings.
- Hideki Matsui went 5-for-5 on Sunday, boosting his batting average to .237 on the season. Matsui over the last seven days is hitting .421 with two homers and 9 RBIs. He looked great during the Yankees series, and hopefully he’ll be able to continue his recent success when the team comes back home to face the Tampa Bay Rays.
- Josh Willingham and David DeJesus are both candidates to be traded at some point before the deadline, so it’ll be interesting to see what the outfield will look like next month. Coco Crisp could also be available as well.
- The offensive production since the second half has been a very positive sign, especially for a very offensively-challenged team like Oakland. The team’s improved production, however, was not enough to get a series win in New York. Hopefully the A’s will be able to strike a balance between strong pitching and timely hitting once they return to the coliseum on Monday.
Topics: A's, A's Offense, Cliff Pennington, David DeJesus, Gio Gonzalez, Hideki Matsui, Josh Willingham, Lineup, New York Yankees, Oakland A's Runs, Oakland Athletics, Offense, Promotions, Rich Harden, Runs Scored, Ryan Sweeney, Yankees