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Mariners punish A’s, Bassitt, with nine-run barrage

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Marco Gonzalez pitched a solid seven innings and shut down the A’s with four straight perfect innings to help give the Mariners a 9-2 victory to open the weekend series on Friday’s Fireworks night.

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A pair of two-run homers and a tough fourth inning kept the A’s out of the game. 

This story has been updated with quotes and additional material from the Oakland A’s clubhouse at Oakland Coliseum.

In the seventh inning with two outs, Domingo Santana hit a single to right and then Omar Narvaez hit his tenth homer of the season off a 2-0 pitch from Wei-Chung Wang to give the Mariners a pair.

Melvin on Wang:

“He has been really good for us. I think that was the first earned run he has given up so I think it was just a little cutter or a slider that stayed in the middle of the plate and he made a good swing for it and made it a homer. It was a surprise for as well as he pitched for us that he actually gave up a run.”

The same thing happened in the eighth, but Mac Williamson had the single to right before Mallex Smith hit his fourth dinger of the season into right field, off a 1-1 pitch from Aaron Brooks to extend the lead to 8-2. 

Starting pitcher Chris Bassitt kept the game close up until his tough fourth inning. The Mariners trailed up until the fourth inning, when they not only kept their lead but continued to expand it.

Bob Melvin on Bassitt:

“He had what, five hits. I think the four walks are what drove his pitch count up some. Make an error, it might be a little different there in that inning but it was just not a real crisp played game for us all the way around. It wasn’t one person in particular. We just didn’t get big hits when we needed to and didn’t make some plays. They made some big swings in the end and just got out of hand for us.”

The fourth inning started with Bassitt who walked leadoff batter Daniel Vogelbach with four straight pitches, then Narvaez hit a base hit to right-center putting runners on first and second with no outs. Tim Beckham hit a grounder to Profar near second base and he flipped it to Semien, but Semien dropped the toss and couldn’t make the play.

Bassitt on his performance:

“I am just pissed off with myself if I am going to be honest with you. I got to put guys away when I am down 0-2. Volgelbach was walked off four straight pitches, which is absolutely unacceptable. Four walks tonight, just can’t happen. One is whatever but four is just ridiculous.”

The umpire called him out at second, but after a 51-second review, the call was overturned and ruled fielder’s choice, with Narvaez safe at second on Semien’s error. Profar received an assist on the play, but the bases were loaded with no outs. What should have been a double-play with a man on third with two outs, turned into an A’s nightmare.

Bob Melvin said:

“He makes a big pitch, gets a double-play ball with bases loaded and then we had a lead briefly and just didn’t play a good all around game for us. It seemed like the first game in a while where we haven’t been at least within shouting distance late in the game so they just kept adding on and we couldn’t take advantage of the opportunities we had early on.”

The nightmare didn’t end there. J.P Crawford hit a rocket down first base line that Olson just missed that turned into a double. Two runs scored with no outs, which gave the Mariners a 3-2 lead with runners on second and third. Gordon hit a sacrifice fly to bring in another run to put the Mariners up 4-2 in the fourth and Bassitt was able to get out of the inning.

Bassitt was tough on himself after the game and doesn’t blame the defense for the outcome of tonight’s game:

“The defense that we have is beyond special so I think it is kind of, I think we are very very lucky to have the defense that we have. I am not mad at that. In the moment, it is what it is. Im just like put the ball in play again. The odds are pretty good that I am going to get a double play or something like that. Really upset with the walks, they have to stop. They have to stop.”

Bassitt shut the Mariners down in the fifth and was able to get 2/3 innings in the sixth before being relieved by LHP Wang. Brooks, came in for the final two innings and it was not his night.

Both relievers gave up the two-run homers and in the ninth with two outs, Brooks had back-to-back pegs, hitting Narvaez and Beckham before giving up a double deep into left-center to Crawford. Brooks got out of the inning but down 9-2 and the A’s couldn’t score another run.

Just about everything went wrong for the A’s, who played sloppy baseball. The first inning was the only frame whn a run wasn’t scored.

The A’s were the first to score in the second inning with two outs.

After back-to-back fly balls deep into the tracks from Matt Olson and Ramon Laureano, Jurickson Profar hit a line drive to left field down the line that bounced into the wall for a standing double. Phegley followed with a bloop hit just over Gonzalez’s head. Second baseman Dee Gordon was able to get to it but couldn’t make the throw. The ball bounced right in front of the first baseman Vogelbach which allowed Profar to score from second on the throwing error. A’s lead 1-0. 

The Mariners followed in the top of the third with Gordon’s line drive to left-center for a sliding double. Laureano made the throw to Profar but he missed the tag. Gordon would have been safe either way. Williamson hit a line drive to center field and Laureano dove to make the catch but just missed it.

Pinder followed and threw the ball to second to hold the runners on the corners with no outs and top of the order. Kyle Seager hit a sac-fly to bring in Gordon which tied it 1-1.

In the bottom of the third inning, Chapman hit the ball deep into left field on the wall, Williamson jumped up to make the catch but the ball hit off his glove and Chapman used his speed and pushed for a triple. Pinder was walked and with two outs and a full count, Olson hit a line drive to right-field to bring in Chapman. From one gold glove to another, their hits were able to give the A’s their last and final lead of the game up 2-1.

It was a tough night for the 21,387 fans who came out to support their home team who patiently waited for fireworks after the game. The A’s came into this series one game over .500 and are now back to .500 (35-35). They can’t seem to stay ahead of it.

On Deck

Frankie Montas will start on Saturday for the A’s against an as-yet unannounced Mariners starting pitcher. On Fathers Day, Tanner Anderson will pitch against Mike Leake.

Notes

Marcus Semien extended his hitting streak to 11 games. … Chapman snapped his 0-11 streak and went 2 for 3. … Bassitt walked four batters, his most since May, while elevating his ERA to 4.61.

Mary Ann Hogan, journalist, educator, dies at 67

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