If I told you I was shocked that Justin Verlander threw a complete game shutout against the A’s tonight to end their season and send the Tigers to the ALCS I’d be lying. I had hope that the A’s could possibly find a way to score against him like they did against Felix Hernandez in September, but Verlander is a whole different animal. They never really were able to muster a rally against the hairy (yes, hairy) right hander. A guy like Verlander doesn’t get to be with the likes of Kate Upton (overrated as this writer might find her to be) without being a flat out stud on the field. So the storybook season of the 2012 A’s comes to a screeching halt, and everyone in the East Bay will have to watch the remainder of the playoffs from the sidelines.
Much like game 1, it appeared that Verlander was getting a large amount of strike calls based on his past accomplishments, and with that the A’s stood no chance. They didn’t do much to counteract it though, and thus we are where we are now.
Jarrod Parker’s line may have ended up not looking so pretty, but he really showed his true potential tonight. He lasted 6.1 innings, allowed 7 hits, 4 ER (2 after he was out of the game) with just 1 walk and 6 strikeouts. Considering this was his rookie campaign, the sky is absolutely the limit for the young right hander, and I can’t wait to see what 2012 brings for him and the rest of the A’s for that matter.
After the game ended and the Tigers celebrated on the field, and the unhappy capacity crowd booed for a moment. But soon after a huge ovation broke out for the A’s, thanking them for the magical season they bestowed upon all of us. The Tigers took a moment from their celebration to salute the A’s for their hard fought series. It was a very fitting, and classy end to an amazing season of baseball in Oakland. While we all pause and reflect on the season that was, let us not forget all the incredible moments we were a part of, the walk offs, the Bernie Lean, the Balfour Rage, even that silly “Call Me Maybe” dance during the middle of the 8th inning. Josh Reddick’s home run outburst, Travis Blackley’s hashtags, Brandon McCarthy’s inspirational recovery, and the emergence of Yoenis Cespedes as a force in the Major Leagues. We will look back more in depth at the 2012 season soon, but for now I simply say thank you to the Oakland Athletics for giving us so much to cheer about in 2012. Spring Training 2013 is just a few short months away.