Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports
The Oakland Athletics have held the lead in the AL West for 100 consecutive days now, and have had baseball’s best record for the past 31. Many will proclaim their run differential or their implementation of a platoon system for their success this season. Another contributing factor to the team’s success is that they just doesn’t like to lose. Well, duh right? Yes, but let’s look at some scores the A’s have put up following a loss this season. They really don’t like losing.
This all started on Opening Day, a loss to the Indians, 2-0. The next game, they hung a 6-spot on the Tribe in a 6-1 win.
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Fast forward to April 18. The previous day the A’s lost to the Angels in a game that went to extras, with Drew Pomeranz giving up the deciding Home Run. Facing the Astros, the Athletics put up 11, en route to a 11-3 victory.
Shortly after this series, the A’s played the Rangers, and were swept at home in three closely contested games. A week later in Texas, the A’s returned the favor, outscoring the Rangers by a total of 25-4 in the three game set.
After losing 5 of 6 to Boston and Seattle, the Athletics rattled off 6 wins in a row, outscoring their opponents (Seattle, Washington and Chicago) 39-8.
The trend continues on and on throughout the course of the season, so I won’t bore you with every instance of this happening.
The last bit that stands out is that from May 23-25 the Blue Jays swept the A’s in Toronto. The Jays were a very hot team, and the A’s were bound to cool down at some point. A little over a month later in a series from July 3-6, the Athletics swept a 4-game series from the Blue Jays in Oakland, again repaying the favor. This series was won with pitching, allowing 4 runs total in the 4 game series.
The aforementioned Blue Jays’ series was also following a 3-game sweep at the hands of the Tigers in Detroit. This is the only series that the Athletics cannot get retribution for in the regular season.
But there’s always October.