A’s Offense Can’t Come Up With Clutch Hits As Yankees Win Wild Card Game, 7-2
by Andrew Pasquini – Sports 1140 KHTK
The Oakland Athletics had plenty of opportunities, finishing the night 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position and left eight stranded, as the season came to an end Wednesday night against the New York Yankees.
The bullpenning strategy worked to an extent in the middle innings but got off to a rough start when Liam Hendriks walked Andrew McCutchen to lead off the game, then allowing a two-run home run to Aaron Judge to give the Yankees an early 2-0 lead.
Lou Trivino had a shaky start to the bottom of the second when he allowed a single to Didi Gregorius and then walked Miguel Andujar. With runners on first and second and no outs, Trivino got Gary Sanchez to ground into a double play followed by striking out Gleyber Torres to get out of the jam. From that point, Trivino would settle down, pitching two more scoreless innings without allowing a hit to keep to deficit at two.
The fourth and fifth innings would be where the A’s had their best chance to get into the game but would fail to score in both. In the fourth, the A’s had runners on first and second with one out, when Luis Severino forced Stephen Piscotty to fly out but the A’s loaded the bases after a Ramon Laureano walk but Marcus Semien to put the A’s threat to rest.
Oakland had just as good an opportunity in the fifth forcing Severino out of the game after putting runners on first and second with no outs. The Yankees replaced Severino with Dellin Betances as he would reitre the next three A’s in order, to end that threat.
Sean Kelly got the A’s through the fifth inning but trouble arose in the sixth when Fernando Rodney wouldn’t record an out, allowing two runs before being pulled for All-Star closer Blake Treinen. Treinen wouldn’t fair much better as he gave up a triple to Luke Voit, extending the lead to 5-0. Gregorious followed up with a sacrifice fly, making it 6-0.
The A’s would get on the board in the eighth inning when Khris Davis hit a two-run home run but Giancarlo Stanton hit a solo shot, giving New York a 7-2 lead. Aroldis Chapman closed it out in the ninth, ending the A’s season.
With the loss, the A’s have now lost eight consecutive win-or-go-home games. The Yankees now go on to take on the Boston Red Sox in the American League Division Series.