Current Series

7/30, 5:05 PST
Oakland (Lucas Harrell) @ Chicago (Brett Anderson)

7/31, 1:10 PST
Oakland (John Danks) @ Chicago (Dallas Braden)

8/1 1:05 PST
Oakland (Gavin Floyd) @ Chicago (Gio Gonzalez)

Previous Series:
Texas 3, Oakland 1
Oakland 3, Texas 1
Texas 7, Oakland 4

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Game 36 Recap or Some Runs Would Be Nice

Los Angeles 4, Oakland 0 (WPA Graph from Fangraphs)

A's Current Record: 18-18
Unfortunately, Dallas Braden couldn't follow up his perfect game with a second one.  Even if he had come close, though, the A's still likely would have lost because their offense is putrid right now.

In the last 27 innings, the A's have scored two runs.  During this stretch, they've managed 19 hits, which isn't horrible, but only four of them have been for extra bases.  15 singles stretched over three games isn't going to score many runs unless they're accompanied by a healthy number of doubles and homers.  A singles-only offense only works if the team is getting nine or ten a game, and that simply hasn't been happening.

The frustrating thing is that the A's haven't been facing that good of pitching.  Derek Holland, CJ Wilson, and Joe Saunders are not guys who should dominate a major league lineup.  Holland was just called up from the minors, Wilson is a converted reliever, and the A's roughed up Saunders for seven runs in early April.  Perhaps calling up Jack Cust will solve some of the issues, but the A's offense sure looks bad with Sweeney out and Barton slumping.

Braden did pitch a very good game, which was marred only by a spotty sixth inning.  Overall, he threw eight innings, giving up four runs, seven hits and a walk, while striking out five.  In the sixth, he gave up three of the hits (including a bunt single) and his only walk.  The big blow was Hideki Matsui's homer with two outs and two on.  Braden isn't consistently getting ground ball outs; his groundball rate is41.5%, which is better than last year, but not ideal either.  Braden will likely always be somewhat of a flyball pitcher, and he's going to give up some homers.  He just has to hope that most of them come with the bases empty.

I'd still qualify his follow-up to the perfect game a success, but the A's offense couldn't even provide him with a hint of support.  We'll see if the A's can turn it around offensively, but it's really hard to be optimistic right now.  The A's offense has such a small margin for error that if one or two pieces aren't working right, bad things happen.  Right now, no one is going good and the results have been disastrous.


  1. Zack,
    Braden was more than OK. I understand the point of the article was that the A's need better offense, but you lay far too much blame on Braden. I'll take the sub 3 ERA any day. Still, I agree that the A's need a bit more offense. Maybe Jose can come back and educate the newbies on how to live better through the magic of chemistry.

  2. Braden did also pitch a complete game and has been eating innings all year...