Oakland, CA – Interleague Play returned to Oakland, this time the A’s hosted the Los Angeles Dodgers who currently hold the best record in baseball. But without their star player Matt Kemp who is out for a month with a hamstring. Yet, the Dodgers have surprised many with their winning ways.
Unfortunately their strategy didn’t work tonight. Oakland shutout LA 3-0 with the help of some stellar pitching from Brandon McCarthy. He had great command on the mound and surrendered only two hits and a walk. McCarthy remained calm, kept a good pace and did not get distracted with the pitching changes made by the Dodgers.
“I don’t have 100 or 120 pitches to play with,” Brandon said. “If I want to stay in the game long a long time, it’s gotta go fast. So, I try to be on the attack and have power. I don’t care if they put the ball in play in the first or second pitch.”
“I don’t know how he does it with 11 days off and a routine being messed up some,” said manager Bob Melvin. “But he goes out there and he looks like he’s pitching every five days. It’s pretty impressive. I’ve never had to do this, where you deal him one time, comes back, give him extra time, and it’s unique.”
After being reinstated from the disabled list June 2, he made his first interleague start. McCarthy is 2-0 with a 2.08 ERA in two starts since his return. A great way to begin the homestand after their five-game winning streak got snapped this past Sunday.
Leadoff Coco Crisp was the offensive spark playing one of his better games this season. He went 4-out-of-5 and got on base on all four plate appearances. Crisp also tied his career-high game with three stolen bases.
The A’s took an early 3-0 lead in the first frame. Both Seth Smith and Jonny Gomes hit an RBI singled along with a double from Coco. Mistakes early from the Dodgers were costly when Smith’s fly ball to center field bounced of Tony Gwynn’s foot allowing two runs to score.
“It’s good,” Seth said. “Anytime you can get on the board early and get a lead is good.”
For the Dodgers, things got off to a bad start. In his first start against his former team, Aaron Harang struggled for command early. Lasting only 3 2/3 innings before surrendering three runs (all earned). Harang set a career-high with eight walks and had both the pitching coach, Ricky Honeycutt and manager Don Mattingly pay him a visit on the mound.
“I felt a little mechanically like I was rushing too much at times,” said Aaron. “I was missing my spots. Things weren’t right. They were begin patient when I missed and they fouled off a lot and it racked up my pitch count fast. Walks didn’t help either.”
Not much defensive support either to assist Harang. In the first when Coco’s popup lead the inning. His ball dropped for a double right in between right fielder Andre Either, second baseman Adam Kennedy and first baseman James Loney.
“No man’s land,” manager Don Mattingly said.
Written by: Malaika Bobino