Oakland 4, Atlanta 3 (12 Innings)

ESPN.com – MLB – Recap – Braves at Athletics – 06/10/2003

You know, these West Coast games are hard enough on my system without the extra innings. Jermaine Dye (gosh, why can’t the Braves develop an outfielder like that?) hit a solo homer off Jung Bong in the twelfth to beat the Braves. It was Bong’s first career loss.

Greg Maddux wasn’t his sharpest, but threw a quality start, seven innings, three runs. It’s a good example of why the concept of a quality start is meaningful. Maddux never led, but he put the Braves in a position to win the game. Some whipping boys from the pen (Holmes, King, Gryboski) threw well and kept the game tight, then tied. Bong allowed only the homer, but it was enough.

Is it better to lose a game outright than to rally to tie only to lose? The Braves were down 3-0, made it 3-2 with a rally in the sixth, and tied it on a solo homer by Robert Fick in the ninth. After that, they looked hopeless for three innings. Marcus Giles doubled in his first three ABs, but the Braves had only four other hits.

Horacio Ramirez pitches tonight against Ted Lilly, and I’ll probably fall asleep again.

9 thoughts on “Oakland 4, Atlanta 3 (12 Innings)”

  1. Given that the A’s are my second favorite team, I had been looking forward to this series all year. Alas, I fell asleep in the sixth inning with the score 3-2.

    I woke up just in time to see Fick’s homer to tie it and to see Ray King breeze through the bottom of the ninth (although that may have been an hallucination), but fell asleep again for good right after Furcal popped out to Chavez next to the dugout in the 10th (which sucks, because I would have liked to see Bradford pitch). I’ll give it another shot tonight.

    Dye did have a big game, but he’s having a horrible year. I don’t think he’s ever recovered from that broken leg in the playoffs two years ago. That’s sad, because I always liked him as a player.

    I was really surprised by the crowd (or lack thereof) for this game. I know Oakland doesn’t historically draw well, but I figured people would turn out to the see a series between two of the best teams in the game. The A’s are proof that good teams don’t necessarily always draw well.

  2. Obviously it wasn’t a hallucination about seeing King, but he really looked great last night. It’s the first time in a while I can remember him this sharp. He even had a slight scare after throwing a pitch where he kicked his leg up and Bobby and Porter came out to check on him, but he was fine. But, damn, he was throwing that fastball and nailing the outside corner to the lefties and blowing it past them.

  3. I’m not much of a lip reader, but I think the King “injury” exchange went something like this:

    Cox: “Ray, you all right?”

    King: “I think I hurt my leg.”

    Jeff Porter (examining King’s hamstring): “Funny, Bobby, I can’t find any muscle here at all.”

    Cox: “Son, don’t you know you can’t pull fat? Get back up there and pitch.”

    King: “Sure thing, skip.”

  4. Ya know, one thing that my buddy Lyle and I noticed, is that Ray looks to be competing with Bobby on the biggest gut on the team. How can he effectively pitch like that? Rich Garces kind of did for a bit, so I guess it’s not totally impossible.

  5. In an early season interview King told the reporter that when he lost weight a few years ago his pitching went to hell. So he went back on the high carb, high protein, high twinkie diet and his pitching went back to normal. While I personally think it is a load of BS, that is his story and he is sticking to it.

  6. In years past this was the type of game the Braves would have won, but since the A’s and Braves seemed to have switched profiles this season, I guess it’s appropriate that Oakland won.

    Oakland is now a pitching and defense oriented squad (They are tied with Tampa for 10th in the AL in OBP), and Atlanta is the high octane offense/erratic defensive team. They had Gil Heredia, we’ve got Shane Reynolds.

  7. Is it better to lose a game outright than to rally to tie only to lose? -I’m more heartbroken about a 17-1 drubbing than a 4-3 loss in extra innings. The first is just embarassing. When Bong walked off the mound last night, it was hard to be too mad, he did his best and made one mistake. Both teams deserved a win last night, the A’s were just a little luckier than the Braves. The A’s made so many great defensive plays last night, too. That was definitely one of the most enjoyable games to watch this season.

    I stayed up to watch the whole game and I’m really feeling it right now.

  8. It’s nice to live in Phoenix for these games. Anyway, the dinger Fick hit was one of the most remarkable shots I have seen. The pitch was at his shoulders, in (I think) a little off the plate even, and he still turned on it and was able to keep it fair. Only guy that I have seen do anything similar to that (but who does it all the time) is Bonds.

  9. Vlad Guerrero and Alfonso Soriano also routinely hit similar head-high shots, although they look different from the other side of the plate.

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