By: Malaika Bobino
Oakland, CA – The last time these two teams met was back in May. Since then they have both excelled in the second half of the season. Unfortunately, for the A’s they looked much like the team to start the season rather than the team who finished with the best record in the month of July.
The Anaheim Angels defeated Oakland 4-0 in the series opener. Jered Weaver stood alone in his brilliant performance on the mound. Usually, the A’s pitching would match such a challenge but Jarrod Parker did not deliver.
“He [Weaver] kept us off balance all night on on both sides of the plate,” manager Bob Melvin said. “No in between fastball, change-ups, no sliders, curve balls, he was really good tonight.”
Jered achieved more than a win tonight, he recorded his fifteenth win and has the most wins in the Majors as well as the best ERA 2.29. With only one loss this season, Weaver has won each of his last nine starts since that loss on May 13.
“Coming out of the bullpen didn’t feel so sharp actually,” he explained. “I was telling Chris [Iannetta], we’re going to have to battle today and I was hoping something clicked out there.”
The Angels backed their ace with good at-bast especially from Erick Aybar who went 3-for-4 in the cycle. After being activated off the disabled list today, Aybar didn’t show any signs of coming off the DL.
Anaheim leadoff the second frame with a double from Kendrys Morales who stole third on a wild pitch and scored on Erick’s single to right field. Mike Trout followed with another single to right field and the Halos extended their lead to 2-0.
Parker gave up four hits and two runs in the frame before striking out Hunter to end the inning. Meanwhile, Trout stole three bases in the first, second, and ninth to record 36 stolen bases for the season.
Jarrod finished the night with 6 2/3 innings, giving up nine hits, four runs (all earned), one walk, one hit batter, one wild pitch and six strikeouts. The back-to-back singles that were issued early was behind him, but Torii Hunter’s two-run single in the seventh ended his night.
“We want this first game bad, we’re not worried about what they’re doing over there,” said Hunter. “I watch MLB Network so I know what every team is doing including Oakland. They’ve been playing good baseball and we are too, this series is huge for us.”
The A’s got shutout for the 13th time this season and was limited to four hits for the night. Jered struck out nine and allowed only two base runners in his complete game. Eric Sogard advanced to second on Coco Crisp’s groundout in the sixth. And Brandon Inge doubled in the eighth.
Now Oakland is back in third place in the American League West. The loss tonight put the Detroit Tigers in top spot for the Wild Card. Two games remain in the series and there is still a lot of baseball left. Losing three straight, the A’s look to turn things around.