Oakland, CA – After a great start by the A’s, everything feel apart in the fifth inning. Three runs scored led to the Rangers finding their offense and reclaimed first place in the American League West.
Oakland lost 5-1 to Texas and it all came apart in one inning. No one said this pennant race was going to be easy. With 24 games left in the season it feels like October already.
“I pitched the ball well,” said Bartolo Colon. “The one play that made the difference was the ball they hit to me that I dropped. It’s a routine play.”
A fielding error by the A’s pitcher allowed Craig Gentry to reach first base. Jurickson Profar hit a RBI double to give the Rangers a 2-1 lead after Mitch Moreland tied the game with a solo shot to right field in the third.
Ian Kinsler grounded a single to third baseman Josh Donaldson that was deflected off Colon’s bare hand for a single. After grimacing in pain, trainers and Bob Melvin rushed to the mound to check on him. Bartolo stayed in the game and Texas scored two more runs before Alex Rios went deep to right field later in the game during the eighth.
“We didn’t need any dramatic hits,” Rangers manager Ron Washington said. “Just put the ball in play and good things will happen.”
Colon got off to a rocky start, he bailed himself out of a jam in the first when Chris Young made a nice catch in center field. Bartolo allowed two on with singles, struck out Adrian Beltre before A.J. Pierzynski flew out to Young to end the threat.
Oakland’s only run came from Coco Crisp who leadoff with a double, went to third on Donaldson’s fly out and scored on a sacrifice fly by Jed Lowrie. After that Texas pitcher Martin Perez did a good job of shutting the offense down.
“I think you look at it and say, “hey, we’ve been playing very good baseball,” said Josh. “They caught a couple of breaks today, got a couple of timely hits and it’s just one of those days. We hit some balls pretty hard, especially early, that they got right underneath. And when those balls fall in we win games.”