Sonny Gray’s Eight Sparkling Innings

I spent much of the day grading papers. My parents’ financial advisor sent me a message, asking me if I needed assistance. I read the news that Suzanne Crough of The Partridge Family had died. I was tired when I got to my class. I give a short lecture and talked with the security guard about motorcycles. I went to the BART station and took a train out to the Coliseum station. I kept hearing the radio announcers talk about the Angels’ trade of Josh Hamilton to the Rangers. I could see how the Angels would want to get rid of him. I missed the first half inning, during which Sonny Gray gave up two runs. A walk, a single, a wild pitch, and another single produced those runs. In the bottom of the inning, Marcus Semien and Stephen Vogt both singled with one out, and then Billy Butler was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Ike Davis fouled out, but then Josh Reddick singled in two runs. Reddick has been hitting the ball well since his return from injury. Brett Lawrie followed with a good swing that sent the ball over the left field fence for a 5-2 score. After such a start to the game, we were expecting a long night with many more runs, but that wasn’t the case. Through the fifth inning, the A’s would get only another single from Marcus Semien as the innings quickly went. Gray had a bit of a rough second inning, giving up three more hits, but Vogt threw out a runner trying to steal second base, and that helped prevent the Angels from scoring. Gray would get thirteen consecutive outs to get through the sixth inning, keeping the Angels to those two runs. We saw Ruby Lopez play Name That Tune with two fans, and the tune was “Ice Ice Baby.” With two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning, Reddick came through with another big hit, a home run that made the score 6-2. There was no Big Head race. Gray allowed a hit to start the seventh inning, but a double play ended the threat. During the seventh inning stretch, we heard Ray Charles’ “Shake a Tail Feather.” In the bottom of the inning, Craig Gentry reached base on an error and stole second base, but no runs came of it. Gray pitched a clean eighth inning to end his night. The A’s faced Steve Bedrosian’s son in the bottom of the inning. Vogt got another hit, and Ike Davis drew a walk, but the score remained 6-2. Evan Scribner came in to pitch the top of the ninth inning, and he brought a pleasing end to the game by striking out the three batters he faced. I was impressed with the pace of this game, which started at 7:07 and ended at 9:13. Attendance was 17,674. I didn’t sit in my assigned seat because an obese person was sitting next to it. I didn’t want to bump elbows with him. Normally I would have gone to the box office to buy more tickets, but I was so happy at the prospect of getting home really early that I skipped it. The problem, though, was that I had to wait a long time for the train at the BART station. I saw one familiar fan at the platform, the skinny girl with the Boston Celtics jersey. I didn’t see many of the regulars at the stadium, including the Banjo Man. Some fans attempted to start The Wave, but nobody felt like doing it. I heard the news that a Baltimore Orioles game would have no fans in attendance. It seemed like a drastic step to move those games to Florida. I don’t think I want to see any more of the Tough Love Mom in Baltimore. I also heard the Jack Ely of “Louie Louie” had died. I didn’t think that I should go out for pizza late at night, so I got out the food that I had in the refrigerator. What would frozen yogurt have tasted like on a cold night? I kept thinking about what a good use for my money would be. I can’t squander what my brother has given me. Some of the people who died on April 29 include Anthony Mann (1967), Alfred Hitchcock (1980), Mick Ronson (1993), and Mike Royko (1997). Today is a birthday for Michelle Pfeiffer (57), Eve Plumb (57), Daniel Day-Lewis (58), Kate Mulgrew (60), Jerry Seinfeld (61), and Willie Nelson (82). According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for April 29, Jimi Hendrix, Cat Stevens, Engelbert Humperdinck, and the Walker Brothers played two concerts at Bournemouth Winter Gardens in England in 1967. In 1970, “A Man Called Horse,” with Richard Harris, was released. Duke Ellington was born 116 years ago today.

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