Brandon Moss wins game, pies himself
Brandon Moss: "Reddick was too tired to pie me, so I pied myself.' (AP)
OAKLAND -- It was the longest game in Oakland history. A grueling six-plus hour contest between the A's and Angels that became a war of attrition. Coco Crisp left the game with a strained left hamstring in the 14th inning, and Chris Young left the game with a strained left quadricep in the 16th frame.
The A's were out of players, and had their pitcher hitting in the lineup, before Brandon Moss hit a two-run walk-off home run in the bottom of the 19th inning to win the game 10-8. It was his second home run of the night.
"I don't even know how I hit it," Moss said. "When I hit it, I didn't think it was going to go. And I thought (Josh) Hamilton was going to rob it."
Mercifully, the ball left the park. After the game, Moss had to pie himself. Josh Reddick merely presented the pies.
"Reddick was too tired to pie me, so I pied myself," Moss said.
Brett Anderson was scheduled to start the game. He ended up getting scratched with right ankle soreness and still ended up pitching 5 1/3 innings of one-run ball. The lefty took the mound in the 13th inning in heroic fashion to pick up his teammates. He left the game with one out in the 18th inning after tweaking the sprained right ankle that was supposed to keep him out of action.
"It's pretty stiff and sore," Anderson said. "I don't think I did anything worse to it."
Anderson believes he will be able to make his next start. He couldn't think of another time he'd ever pitched in a relief role. Pitching coach Curt Young was the one that approached Anderson in the dugout and asked if he could do it. The only other option was Jerry Blevins, who had pitched three days in a row.
"We were looking to get Blevins off, so it was a fairly easy decision to go to Brett," Melvin said. "Thank God that we did. We would have gone to a designated pitcher a lot earlier than that."
Blevins ended up in the game anyways He threw 1 2/3 innings and got the win. Melvin indicated that he would have gone one more inning before outfielder Seth Smith would have been forced to pitch.
The A's persevered but at what cost? With Young and Crisp out of the game, Seth Smith had to move from the DH spot to the outfield. That forced the A's pitchers to hit. After pitching in the 18th inning, Blevins led off the bottom half of the inning and struck out with fans chanting his name.
"Good game to win, bad game to lose," Melvin said. "We exhausted everything we had, obviously."
The cold weather and length of the game, made it a risky affair for both teams. The Angels didn't escape unscathed. Center fielder Peter Bourjos strained his right hamstring and Luis Jimenez also left the game with an injury.
Just like the game on Sunday, Cespedes delivered a game-tying hit in the ninth inning. Unlike Sunday, he didn't do it with a home run. He hit a long single that he thought was a home run, but it hit the wall, and since he was admiring his blast, he couldn't get into scoring position.
'I think Cespedes just thought he got it," Melvin said. "A lot happened in this game that normally doesn't happen in one baseball game."
Cespedes is hitting .570 (4 for 7) with three RBI in the ninth inning this season. He is able to rise to the occasion when the A's need him the most.
The Angels held a large lead for most of the game. It wasn't until the eighth inning when the A's rallied for four runs that they really found themselves in striking distance. Jed Lowrie drove in the first run of the inning after back-to-back singles to start the frame. Cespedes drew a walk to load the bases and Josh Donaldson stroked a two-run single up the middle. Chris Young made it a one-run game with a pinch-hit single.
The A's lost the lead in the top of the 15th inning and rallied to tie it back up in the bottom half of the inning on an Adam Rosales single.
Dan Straily started the game and lasted 4 2/3 innings. He allowed six runs on seven hits. Not counting Anderson, A's relievers threw 10 innings of relief and only allowed one run.
For the second night in a row, the A's have overcome a five-run deficit and won the game in walk-off fashion. They have now won their last 12 games against the American League West.
-- The A's won't know the status of Crisp and Young until later Tuesday afternoon.
-- The A's announced during the game that they traded Casper Wells to the White Sox for cash considerations. Wells was designated for assignment on Sunday. The A's traded cash to the Blue Jays to acquire Wells last Monday.
-- Lowrie hit a double in the 11th inning that gave him his 34th hit in April, which is a new A's record.