Brandon Hicks’ Two-Run Ground Rule Double

I saw Rebecca Jarvis on CBS This Morning talk about how she begged her mom for a pet dog, but she would not relent.  I heard the tale before, so I had to believe it was an important event in Rebecca’s life.  David Edelstein came into the studio to talk about the new movie Woody Allen film “To Rome With Love.”  He said that he liked it more than most other critics did, but in his review, he kept repeating that Woody was shedding his skin.  The imagery couldn’t help reminding me of “The Singing Detective.”  John Currence was the chef of the morning, and he brought his recipes for Crawfish Maque Choux, Creole Seasoning, Port Sabayon, Shrimp and Blue Crab Court Bouillon, University Grays’ Punch, and Shrubs.  Anthony Mason and Rebecca interviewed David Crosby, Stephen Stills, and Graham Nash, and they ended the show with “Teach Your Children.”  Instead of watching Anne Makovec do the morning news, I hung out at the coffee shop for a while.  I didn’t get around to reading through the New York Times Book Review.  I set out for work.  I hate doing favors for other people because they never appreciate them.  I caught the bus to the Rockridge BART station and stopped by the Trader Joe’s there to buy a sandwich and bottled water.  I got to the Coliseum within an hour of getting on the bus, but I did miss A’s batting practice.  I listened to 103.7 FM as I waited for the game to start.  I heard songs like “Come Together.”  I’ve been hearing a lot of “You’re My Best Friend” on that station.  I’ve noticed that during the past three games, the stadium announcer didn’t give the A’s starting lineup immediately after the visitors’ starting lineup.  They save the A’s until just before they take the field.  I didn’t hold out much hope that the A’s could win this game, because Tyson Ross had a 6.11 ERA to start the day.  Ross couldn’t protect 1 2-0 lead after the first inning, or a 4-2 lead after three innings.  The A’s played bad defense, with Jonny Gomes committing a horrendous error in left field in the second inning, and Brandon Moss committing three errors in the sixth inning, including two on one play.  The A’s scored two runs in the first inning when Josh Reddick hit a home run with Jemile Weeks on base.  They would also get singles from Yoenis Cespedes and Brandon Inge, but Derek Norris, whose batting average was .000, struck out.  In the second inning, the A’s scored one more run when with two outs, Crisp, Weeks, and Reddick all singled.  Cespedes hit into a force play for the last out.  In the third inning, the A’s scored one more run after Jonny Gomes made up for his error with a home run.  Inge followed with a double, but Norris, Moss, and Brandon Hicks all made outs.  The A’s had three players named Brandon playing in this game, with Inge, Moss, and Hicks.  It’s too bad that McCarthy wasn’t pitching.  The Giants also had a couple of players named Brandon.  The A’s didn’t score in the fourth through eighth innings, although Weeks reached second base in the fourth inning, and Reddick reached third base in the seventh.  Also, along the way, Coco Crisp was ejected from the game after he yelled at the umpire about a strikeout call.  After the terrible double-error play in the top of the sixth that tied the game at 4-4, the Giants took the lead with a two-run home run off Jerry Blevins right after the pitching change.  Brian Fuentes pitched the top of the seventh inning and reminded the fans why they didn’t like him.  After one out, the Giants got a walk, a two-run home run, a walk, a single, a walk, and a walk with the bases loaded.  By the end of that sequence, Jordan Noberto had come into the game.  He would strike out the next two batters to finally end the inning, but now the score was an unreachable 9-4.  Norberto would give up two hits but no runs.  Jim Miller would do the best pitching for the A’s in getting four straight outs.  With the score 9-4, the bottom of the ninth inning started with Jemile lining the ball to left field for an out.  Reddick singled.  Cespedes struck out.  Reddick took second base, though he didn’t get credit for a stolen base.  Gomes walked.  The A’s got to their last strike when the count to Inge was 1-2, but he singled for one run and a 9-5 score.  Norris was batting .000 at the beginning of the day got his second hit of the game, a single that brought in Gomes for a 9-6 score.  The A’s got down to their last strike again with Brandon Moss, but he drew a walk to load the bases.  Brandon Hicks was batting .000 and was 0-for-4 for the game, but Bob Melvin didn’t send in a pinch-hitter for him.  Hicks got the hit that looked like it would clear the bases and tie the game, but it went for a ground rule double, and Moss had to stay at third base.  That was the heartbreaker of the game.  The score was 9-8.  Seth Smith was in for an ejected Crisp, and the A’s again got down to their last strike, but he drew a walk to again load the bases.  With all the pitching changes, this half-inning was going on forever.  The sea gulls were flying overhead to take over the stands.  If Jemile Weeks could draw a walk, it would tie the game, and a hit would win it for the A’s.  The A’s yet again got down to their last strike.  Weeks hit a sinking pop fly that didn’t sink fast enough for a hit.  The Giants’ second baseman caught it for the last out of the game at 8:30.  I didn’t think it was as close to being a hit as a lot of other fans in the stands thought.  It was disappointing to see Weeks make the first and last outs of the inning.  The game lasted 4:15, and was one of the longest nine inning games in A’s history.  That last half-inning was torture, not because of the score, but because the cold air aggravated my coughing.  I blamed the loss on Moss’ errors, and the home run balls from Blevins and Fuentes.  Dan Rodowicz, the stadium organist played songs like “La Bamba.”  A couple of Grant Balfour fans sitting behind me did the “Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi” chant when he walked past.  I haven’t seen any new stories about the A’s possibly trading him.  During the Round Table Pizza wheel segment.  I wondered if they knew that we all know that behind every Mystery label on the wheel, it says Pizza.  I was so very anxious to get home.  The game ran so late that a lot of people were heading in the opposite direction on the BART bridge, as they were headed for a New Edition concert.  I listened to Lou Reed’s “New York” album and caught the last fifteen minutes of the Star Trek episode “The Trouble with Tribbles.”  Two people who died on June 24 were Brian Keith (1997) and Paul Winchell (2005).  According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind segment for June 24, Jefferson Airplane released “White Rabbit” and Procol Harum released “A Whiter Shade of Pale” in 1967.  In 1970, “Catch-22” was released.  In 1972, Helen Reddy’s “I Am Woman” was released.  In 1983, “Twilight Zone: The Movie” was released.  In 1987, Jackie Gleason died at age 71.

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