Somehow the A’s are just three games under .500 at 13-16, as it feels like they should be 3-26. What started out has a promising homestand ended with a loud thud, capped by a demoralizing 9-8 loss to the Mariners on Wednesday afternoon. They got swept by the first place M’s and are now riding a four-game losing streak into another east coast road trip that begins tonight in Baltimore.
The A’s had beaten Felix Hernandez already once this season, which is a rare feat in itself, but had a really great chance to do it again, knocking Seattle’s ace around for eight runs (four earned) in four innings pitched. They took an 8-4 lead into the 6th inning, but the bullpen that had been so steady the first couple weeks of the season decided to be shaky all on the same day, and they blew the lead to lose the game 9-8. They knocked Felix out of the game in the fifth inning and couldn’t manage to win it. That had to be the most frustrating loss of the season yet.
Then things got even worse on the off day yesterday as it was announced that Chris Bassitt would need Tommy John surgery. We won’t see him until next season if even that. That sucks big time as Bassitt had a really nice start to the season. The A’s do have Jesse Hahn back in the bigs though, and he was dazzling in his 2016 debut, throwing 6 2/3 of shutout ball in the A’s win against the Astros on Saturday. It’s nice to have depth, as it often gets tested.
One other positive thing on the homestand was watching Yonder Alonso finally deliver a big hit in a big situation, as he hit a three-run walkoff home run on Friday night. He hadn’t provided much of anything offensively up until that point, but now is 5-for-19 (.263) with three runs scored in the past seven days, so maybe things are starting to look up for him. We have to hope so, because it’s really hard to win many games when your first baseman is slugging .250.
So another east coast trip begins tonight. The A’s will take on the Orioles this weekend, where they have the hottest hitter in baseball in Manny Machado waiting for them. It’s going to be a tough weekend, that’s for sure. Surprise me, A’s.