Pratt's Instant Replay: A's 8, Mariners 2

Griffin: 'I was just trying to pound them inside with the fastball'

Pratt's Instant Replay: A's 8, Mariners 2
April 4, 2013, 2:30 pm
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Yoenis Cespedes hit his second home run of the season in the A's win over the Mariners Wednesday. (AP)

OAKLAND -- Oakland's offensive struggles appear to be a thing of the past. After scoring six runs on Wednesday, the A's defeated the Mariners 8-2 for their second win of the season, reaching double-digits in the hits column for the second game in a row.

The A's split the four-game series with the Mariners and head to Houston to meet the newest members of the American League West, the Astros.

At the Plate

The A's spoiled the big league debut of Mariners starting pitcher Brandon Maurer. The 22-year-old right-hander allowed eight hits and six runs in six innings. Josh Reddick did the most damage with two hits and four RBI.

Reddick started the season 0-for-10, but broke out his slump in a big way with a two-run homer in the first inning. The ball he hit was a no-doubter, and right fielder Michael Saunders just turned and watched it fly out of the yard.

The bearded right fielder added an opposite field RBI double in the sixth inning that scored Jed Lowrie, who reached on a double. Lowrie finished the day 2 for 4 with two doubles.

Yoenis Cespedes promptly drove home Reddick with a screaming line-drive home run to left field. Both of Cespedes' homers this season have been laser shots that got out of the ballpark in a hurry. The A's led 6-2 through six innings.

Chris Young started the fifth inning with a hard-hit double that bounced off the wall in left field. He advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored when John Jaso hit an RBI single to make it 3-1.

Nate Freiman entered the game in Brandon Moss' place and hit a deep sacrifice fly to right field as part of a two-run eighth inning for the A's. 

Starting Pitching Report

A.J. Griffin was his typical goofy self in the clubhouse prior to his start. Unlike most pitchers, Griffin is outgoing and very talkative before taking the mound. Most of the time he'll even sing along with his favorite songs in the clubhouse before hitting the field. He carried that pregame confidence with him onto the mound.

Griffin didn't allow a baserunner until the third inning, when he walked Kelly Shoppach and gave up a single to Michael Saunders. He responded by striking out Franklin Gutierrez swinging to end the threat.

In the fifth inning the Mariners got on the board after leading off with back-to-back singles. Seattle manager Eric Wedge called for a sacrifice bunt to move the runners over before Saunders hit a sacrifice fly to left to make it 2-1. Griffin walked the next batter, but forced Raul Ibanez to pop up and escaped with the lead intact.

Griffin labored through the sixth inning. Michael Morse led off with his fourth home run of the series. With a one-run lead and two runners on base, Griffin threw four curveballs to Robert Andino and got him to ground out to end the inning.

Bullpen Report

Sean Doolittle pitched a scoreless seventh inning, highlighted by a 12-pitch battle with Morse. Doolittle got the upper hand by striking out the Mariners' slugger swinging on a 93 mph fastball.

Jerry Blevins got all three batters he faced in the eighth inning to fly out to left field.

Ryan Cook, who struggled with mechanical kinks that led to three walks and a hit batsman in his last appearance, stuck out the side in the ninth inning.

In the Field

In the first inning, Eric Sogard lunged to his left toward a hard-hit ball, snagging it in his glove and completing the throw to first.

Brandon Moss made a leaping catch to rob Dustin Ackley of a hit, snatching the ball out of the air at the height of his jump.

Moss looks like he has improved defensively at first base, a position he converted to in 2012 after spending the bulk of his career as an outfielder.

Young got his first career start in left field and made it look like his natural position by tracking balls effortlessly. He doesn't have the arm that Cespedes has at the position, but he looked smooth defensively.

Attendance

The A's announced an attendance of 12,134.

Dot Race

The crowd let out "oohs" and "aahs" and later cheered as green won the dot race.

Up Next

Dan Straily finds himself in an odd predicament. He will make the start on Friday against the Houston Astros, but knows it will be his only trip to the mound with Oakland for awhile. Bartolo Colon is eligible to return from his 50-game suspension on Saturday and will be taking Straily's spot in the rotation.

Former A's prospect Brad Peacock will be on the mound for the Astros. He was sent to Houston with Chris Carter as part of the Jed Lowrie trade. It will be Peacock's Major League debut.