Pratt's Instant Replay: Rangers 9, A's 7

September 27, 2012, 9:03 pm
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ARLINGTON -- The A's fell behind big in the first inning and tried to battle their way out of a five-run hole. Trading haymakers with the Rangers in Texas is a tough task. And the home team took this one 9-7. Oakland hit five home runs in the losing effort.Starting Pitching ReportIt wasn't Travis Blackley's day. He gave up five runs on five hits, two of which were home runs, in the first inning. He never made it back out to the mound for the second inning. It was Blackley's worst outing of the season. He gave up five runs to the Rangers on June 5 in Oakland but that was over four and two-thirds innings.Blackley has allowed nine runs, seven earned, over three innings in his last two starting assignments. The five first inning runs are the most the Rangers have scored since they plated six runs on May 25 at home against Toronto.Bullpen ReportThe A's called on Jim Miller to start the second inning. He lasted two innings but gave up two runs. In the second inning he allowed back-to-back doubles to Elvis Andrus and Josh Hamilton that scored a run for the Rangers. He also gave up a double to Nelson Cruz to start the third inning and an RBI single to Mike Napoli.The A's finally got Jeremy Accardo in a game. He joined the team in New York and hadn't been used yet. He gave up two runs in the fourth inning but pitched a scoreless fifth. He likely needed to work off some of the rust. He hadn't pitched since Aug. 16 for the River Cats in Triple-A.Jesse Chavez pitched a much-needed scoreless inning of relief. He has allowed a run or more in each of his first outings. Pat Neshek also contributed a scoreless frame.At the PlateThe A's did their best to keep pace with the Rangers, but the five-run head start was too tough to overcome. One major positive was the pop displayed by Josh Reddick in the second inning. He drove a ball an estimated distance of 399 feet into the second deck in right field for his 30th home run of the season. The recent slump Reddick had been on could have been attributed to pressing as he wanted to reach that milestone mark of 30. Reddick was batting .128 (5 for 39) with zero RBI since he connected on his 29th home run on Sept. 16.Oakland kept fighting despite falling behind. They scored in the second, third, and fourth innings. Jonny Gomes drove home Adam Rosales with an RBI double. Rosales had to make a crazy head-first dive to avoid the incoming throw but Napoli didn't come up with the ball cleanly at home. Derek Norris hit his sixth home run of the season, a two-run shot to left field, in the fourth inning to make it a 7-4 game.Yoenis Cespedes sent his 22nd home run of the season into the left field stands. The ball traveled an estimated 412 feet. Cespedes' home run was the 100th homer hit by an A's player since the All-Star break. Moments later, Brandon Moss went deep for his 20th of the season, and the A's MLB-leading 101st since the break. Two batters later Reddick connected for his 31st of the season and put the A's within two runs of the Rangers.With Reddick (31), Cespedes (22), and Moss (20), the A's have three players with over 20 home runs for the first time since 2006, when Frank Thomas (39), Nick Swisher (35), and Eric Chavez (22) did it.In the FieldReddick made a catch in the first inning that sent him on a collision course with the wall in center field. He hauled it in seamlessly. Adam Rosales made a full-extension dive on a ball hit up the middle but couldn't get up to throw out the runner in time.AttendanceThe Rangers announced an attendance of 43,796.Dot RaceRed wins the live action dot race. The green dot got shoved into the railing of the A's dugout and almost took out some A's players.Up NextThe A's head home for the remainder of the season. They have completed a stretch of 17 of 20 road games. The three home games in Oakland felt more like another stop on the trip than a home stand. They won 10 of the 17 away games and 12 of the last 20 games overall.A.J. Griffin (6-1, 2.80 ERA) starts the home stand for the A's against left-handed pitcher Blake Beavan (10-10, 4.64 ERA)

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