Athletics fails to get better from Moniak's loss to Angels

Soft-hitting Mickey Moniak landed the decisive blow on Tuesday night because the Athletics squandered their likelihood for a giant inning early and late with a 7-5 road loss to the Los Angeles Angels.

Moniak, the Angels' center fielder because Mike Trout was injured, hit a grand slam within the fourth inning against the A's' starter and loser, Mitch Spence (4-4). Tyler Anderson kept getting the A's free baserunners, but didn't pay for his mistakes often enough. He made it through five innings and improved his record to 7-7.

The Athletics, 29-53, hope to avoid a series sweep against the Angeles on Wednesday afternoon before leaving for Arizona and have won 14 of their last 17 games. The Angels are 32-46.

The grand slam was Moniak's fourth home run of the season. The A's got a house run from designated hitter Brent Rooker, his 14th. Taylor Ward hit a solo shot against Sean Newcomb within the seventh inning, his 14th of the season and his second home run in two nights.

The A's scored twice within the eighth inning against Jose Marte to get inside 7-5, with Armando Alvarez scoring a run on a bloop single that got here immediately after a bloop single by Gelof that brought home Shea Langeliers, who got here in on an error by Luis Rengifo at third base.

Pinch hitter Lawrence Butler hit the ball hard to center, but Moniak chased after him and scored on a sacrifice fly, and the rally ended there when Ben Joyce got JJ Bleday to hit a ground ball and make a double play.

Carlos Estevez picked up his 14th save for the Angels, allowing only a two-out single to Tyler Soderstrom and striking out two players.

The Angels chased Spence within the sixth inning after he allowed a walk to Moniak, who reached second base on a wild pitch and scored on a double by Jo Addel, putting the A's behind 6-3.

“There were a lot of errors in the inning where he allowed five,” A's manager Mark Kotsay told reporters. “The lefties seemed to have a good plan against him tonight. Other than that inning, I thought he did a good job.”

Anderson was replaced by Hunter Strickland after five innings after throwing 109 pitches, including 62 strikes, with five walks and two strikeouts.

“We have released him from responsibility,” said Kotsay. “All the best to him and the year he has.”

Rooker's home run against Anderson was a no brainer, driving the bat 107.2 mph down the left field line and traveling 418 feet, putting the A's inside 5-3. It was his first home run in 11 games since June 9 against Toronto.

Moniak's first profession grand slam was the game-winning five-run hit within the fourth inning after Spence had effortlessly played through the primary three innings.

Ward hit a double to start out the inning and was hit by a single to 3rd base by Willie Calhoun. O'Hoppe hit a single to center to attain the Angels' first run, and Spence hit Zach Neto on a bunt try to load the bases.

That brought in Moniak, who got here in with a .193 batting average but sank a 1-1 pitch over the right-side fence for a 5-2 lead.

The Athletics had Anderson in trouble within the third inning, scoring on an RBI bloop single by JJ Bleday and a bases-loaded walk by Tyler Nevin, however the rating was 2-0 and might have been higher.

Alvarez, the 29-year-old rookie who was called as much as the team on Saturday, opened the inning with a double to right followed by a walk to Max Schuemann. Daz Cameron struck out before Bleday hit a dunker to center to usher in Alvarez. Bleday was thrown out trying to succeed in second base while Schuemann went to 3rd base.

After seven years and 800 minor league games, Alvarez finished 3-for-4 together with his first hit and RBI.

“It was amazing,” Alvarez said. “I was on cloud nine. I was floating on clouds as I walked the bases.”

Alvarez said he gave the ball to his father, who was present, from his first hit.

Anderson then walked Miguel Andujar and Rooker to load the bases and hit Nevin to force in a run. Hopes for a greater inning ended when Langeliers hit a grounder to shortstop on the primary pitch for the third out.

At the tip of the inning, Anderson had thrown 69 pitches with 4 walks and one hit batter and was lucky to have allowed only two runs.

Spence, however, needed only 35 pitches with no walks and two strikeouts, while keeping the Angels to zero in the identical period.

NOTEWORTHY

β€” The A's missed a likelihood to attain one other run within the fourth inning when Cameron's hit to right center was ruled a success into the web and a ground rule double. Alvarez, who had hit a single with one out, easily scored on that play and was sent back to 3rd base. Anderson then caught Bleday on a fly to right.



image credit : www.mercurynews.com