It was a close game between the Oakland Athletics and Kansas City Royals this afternoon on 1965 Turn-Back-The-Clock Day at O.Co Coliseum. Donned in their throwback jerseys, these two teams went back and forth over the nine innings. A’s starting pitcher Scott Kazmir went seven innings allowing seven hits, three runs, and striking out six while Chris Young, the Royals’ starter, went six innings allowing only four hits, two runs, and striking out four. Ultimately, the Royals’ bullpen shut down the A’s in the later half of the game, and the Athletics were not able to come back from the one run deficit despite having men in scoring position.
Oakland was able to get on the board early in the first inning. Sam Fuld led off with a double and then proceeded to steal third during Stephen Vogt’s at-bat. Then, on a throwing error by Young, Fuld scored the Athletics’ first run of the day.
Kansas City was the next to score in the top of the third. Omar Infante doubled against Kazmir and advanced to third on a balk, which the A’s protested but to no avail. Mike Moustakas came to the plate and hit a sacrifice fly that allowed Infante to score and tie the game at 1-1. The Athletics would strike again in the fifth on a throwing error by Alcides Escobar. Sogard, who singled to center and then stole second, came in to score on that error and the A’s would take the lead again.
However, the Royals retaliated in the top of the sixth with a double steal. Lorenzo Cain and Eric Hosmer stole third and second respectively in an aggressive move by the Royals. Then, Kendrys Morales drove both of them in with a two-RBI single to left field. Oakland threatened in the eighth with a couple of men on base, but they ultimately were not be able to score.
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Fuld was able to capitalize on his previous success against Young. In his career facing Young, Fuld has a .571 batting average and a 1.43 SLG. In today’s game, he hit a double as well as drew a walk. Additionally, Fuld demonstrated some skilled base running against Young when he stole third. After struggling in May, June has been great for Fuld, who is hitting .366 this month. It was nice to see his offensive success continue during the game this afternoon.
The Athletics were not able to score any runs even when there were men in scoring position. Oakland had a great opportunity in the eighth with two RISP and no outs, but were not able to bring in any runs. Besides the lack of run support, the A’s played solid baseball and did not commit any fielding errors, which is always a plus.
- Rookie and leadoff hitter Billy Burns was out of the lineup for a second day in a row due to hip flexor issue. Since Burns’ game is mostly based on his speed, the A’s are just being cautious and resting him for a few days. He should be back in the lineup tomorrow.
- Royals’ reliever Wade Davis came into the game in the eighth with a 0.29 ERA and having only given up one run in 31 innings. However, it became interesting when he walked the first two batters and then almost walked Vogt. He was able to get out of the inning by striking out Vogt and getting Ben Zobrist to hit into a double play.
- In 1965, the Kansas City Athletics introduced a new mascot, “Charlie O.,” the Missouri mule. This actual mule traveled to many American League cities and even ate oats in the lobby of the Americana Hotel in New York City. Charlie O. was in attendance for today’s game and took photos with fans.
The series will wrap up tomorrow in Oakland at 1:05pm. Jesse Chavez will be on the bump for the Oakland Athletics and he is looking to rebound from his poor outing earlier this week. Kansas City will have righty Jeremy Guthrie taking the mound. Guthrie has been inconsistent this season, so let’s hope tomorrow he will have a bad outing in order for the A’s to win at least one game in this series.