Oakland A’s: So much for the slow start
By David Hill
It was easy to be concerned after the Oakland A’s first seven games. They did not look like a team that would be able to contend, having been walloped by the Houston Astros in the opening series of the year, and then struggling against the defending champion Los Angeles Dodgers. The A’s did not seem to be in the same class as those two teams.
But it was still early. The A’s have had a history of slow starts before bouncing back to contend. There was no reason to suspect that this year would be any different despite a multitude of changes to the roster.
Oakland A’s slow start officially in the rearview mirror
With their 7-0 victory over the Tigers on Saturday, the A’s have now won seven in a row and have surpassed the .500 mark for the first time this year. They have passed the Astros in the standings, a team that was five games ahead of them after seven games this year. Rumors of the A’s demise were certainly premature.
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The most encouraging part of this run is that the A’s appear to be firing on all cylinders. The pitching staff has shut out the Tigers in each of the past two games, and has allowed just 19 runs in this seven game winning streak. Frankie Montas and Sean Manaea have stepped up, while Cole Irvin had his best start in his career on Saturday.
Oakland’s offense has finally stepped up as well. Jed Lowrie has been on fire, notching two hits in each of his last six games. Ramon Laureano has ignited the offense at the top of the lineup, while Matt Chapman, Seth Brown, and Matt Olson have each launched two homers in the past week. Even backup catcher Aramis Garcia has been swinging a hot bat.
Eventually, the A’s will lose another game. And eventually, they will have another cold streak during the season. But there is decidedly less doom and gloom surrounding the A’s now, as their run has brought excitement back to the Bay Area.
The Oakland A’s miserable start to the season is just a bad memory. It is amazing how much of a difference a seven game winning streak can make.