Texas 10, Oakland 1 (WPA Graph from Fangraphs)
A's Current Record: 18-16
After two exciting games in a row, the A's put up a stinker last night. From the manager on down, the A's simply didn't do anything well. Geren put together a weird, borderline stupid lineup, Gio Gonzalez got crushed, and the hitters couldn't string together enough singles to score any runs; the only bright spot was Eric Patterson's meaningless pinch hit homer in the eighth.
Last night's lineup was just asking for trouble. I understand that Geren wanted to go heavy on the righties, but come on. Jake Fox in left AND Josh Donaldson at DH? Ridiculous. Josh Donaldson doesn't belong in the major leagues and should really only be getting starts at catcher to rest Landon Powell (a job I think Fox can do). Donaldson's simply overmatched at the plate; he's 1 for 19 and has struck out 9 times without a walk. There's no reason for him to be in the lineup, especially at DH..
And what's Jake Fox doing in the outfield? Maybe he can play out there when groundball pitchers like Cahill or Mazzaro are on the mound, but he really has no business out there most days. He looked bad enough on the successful play he made on Josh Hamilton's line out in the third (Steve Bitker noted Fox's "interesting" route he took to the ball), but his diving attempt of Kinsler's double in the fourth was just horrible.
Gio Gonzalez needed all the help he could out there as the Rangers were hitting him hard all night. Even in the first he gave up two doubles and two pretty hard hit outs, but managed to escape unscored upon. He unraveled a bit in the fourth after Fox's misplay and his own balk allowed two runs to score. Gio couldn't get out of the fifth as Michael Young opened with a single and Josh Hamilton followed with a homer to drive him from the game. The A's bullpen followed by imploding, allowing 6 runs, including 4 homers in 4 innings.
It really didn't matter though, as the A's offense was impotent. Help may be on the way, but not as soon as initially thought. Kurt Suzuki is now targeting a Saturday return (there was hope that he could return today) and both Mark Ellis and Coco Crisp will begin rehab assignments next week. Suzuki can't get here fast enough, because although Landon Powell is doing fine as Suzuki's backup, Donaldson really needs to be in AAA getting regular at bats and NOT DH'ing for the A's.