Oakland, CA – September can often be a preview of the upcoming playoffs. The best time of baseball is right happening now. It’s a tight race in the American League and the possible Wild Card matchup is underway at the Coliseum for the next two days.
The A’s took advantage of an unsettled CC Sabathia and scored three runs early while Mark Canha recorded his sixteenth home run of the season. Oakland beat the Yankees 6-3 in Game 1 of a three-game series.
“They’re a tough lineup to go through (and) they do a good job of shortening the game,’’ New York’s manager Aaron Boone said.
Sabathia got into a jam early in the first frame when he walked in a batter and gave up three runs. After the Yankees got on the board first, the A’s got five hits off the veteran ace.
Andrew McCutchen singled, stole second and an error moved him to third. Aaron Hick’s sacrifice fly drove him in and Oakland took over. Matt Chapman led the way with the first single followed by a single from Jed Lowrie, Khris Davis and Stephen Piscotty before Matt Olson walked.
After Sabathia walked in a run, Mark Canha out ran a throw from third baseman Miguel Andujar to first baseman Luke Voit for a base hit scoring in Davis to make it a 3-1 game. Jonathan Lucroy flew out to center field to end the inning.
“Just wasn’t my day today,’’ said Sabathia.
By the second New York got back in the game with a two-run blast from Voit to tie it up 3-3. But the A’s continued to get runs in when needed. Marcus Semien walked bottom of the second and Chapman hit a double trying to advance to third but was out while Semien scored making it a 4-3 game.
Semien then doubled in the fourth and Lowrie drove him in to extend Oakland’s lead 5-3. Canha capped off a great day at the ballpark with a home run to make it a 6-3 game. He matched a career high with his 16th homer of the season.
Sabathia’s day ended after 3 1/3 innings with seven hits, two walks and four strikeouts. But for Trevor Cahill it was more than a win, it was his first timing besting the Yankees in his career. He improved to 5-0 with a 1.09 ERA at home.
“I didn’t want to bring that u, but I knew that, so definitely more adrenaline,” said Cahill. I just wanted to pitch well against them, and I was able to get the ball to the bullpen.
It’s the Yankees … and it just felt like playoff baseball. It’s a big series for us.”
A big series it was. Cahill managed to keep New York at bay before the bullpen took over reducing any and all chances for a comeback. Their ace hitter, Giancarlo Stanton went 0-for-4 while the team went scoreless for seven frames.
“When he’s on, he knows where it’s going, and he really didn’t the first couple innings,” Melvin said. “The next thing you know he gives us five, so he was able to get it under control and that’s what veteran guys are typically able to do.”
Game 2 continues tomorrow at 7:05pm. The A’s will go with their right-hand reliever Liam Hendricks on the mound to face-off with the Yankees lefty J.A. Happ.