Kendall Graveman’s Great Effort

After the movie, I crossed the street to wait for a 12 bus. It got to the stop late, which riders said was normal on a Friday. I got to 20th Street and transferred to a 1R bus. I rode to the Fruitvale BART station, where I boarded a train to the Coliseum station. The gates were already open when I got to the stadium. It was 90s Night, and I did hear “Smells Like Teen Spirit” blaring through the stadium speakers at one point. I fell asleep for a few minutes before the game started, before the usher in my section said hello to me. The A’s had won only one game since the trade of Kazmir, and they had no hits since the first inning of Thursday night’s game. Kendall Graveman was the starting pitcher, and he did a good job, coming within one out of completing seven innings. He allowed a walk to the Indians’ first batter of the game, but then he got a 6-3 double play. He gave up a single, but then made a dive that Ken Korach called a Gold Glove play for a 1-3 out. The second and third innings were clean innings for Graveman. The A’s scored in the bottom of the third inning. Mark Canha walked, and Eric Sogard singled, with Canha advancing to third base. Marcus Semien reached first base on an error, with Canha scoring the first run of the game on the play. Billy Burns struck out, and the failure to advance Sogard would cost the A’s. Brett Lawrie hit into a 4-6 force play, with Sogard going to third base. However, Josh Reddick flied out to center, ending the inning with the score still at 1-0. The top of the fourth was what Vince Cotroneo called a shutdown inning for Graveman. He gave up a single, but then picked the runner off first base on a play that took 1:25 to review. He got the next two Cleveland batters out. In the fifth inning, he allowed only a single with one out, and he had a clean sixth inning. Before the seventh inning, we saw a Big Head race. Rollie Fingers won that one. Graveman the first two batters of the inning out with fly balls to left field. Just as quickly, he got into trouble by giving up a single and a double. There was still the chance to get out of the inning with the score still 1-0, but Semien committed a fateful error, allowing the Indians to tie the score. Fernando Rodriguez replaced Graveman and took two pitches to get the last out with a ground ball to second. In the eighth inning, Rodriguez got two outs but also gave up a walk and a single. Bob Melvin brought in Edward Mujica to get the last out, which he did with a strikeout. In the top of the ninth inning, Mujica gave up a single. Stephen Vogt made a high throw to second in trying to throw out the runner stealing the base. Mujica gave up a double that gave the Indians the lead at 2-1. He struck out the next batter, and then Melvin brought in Fernando Abad, who got the last out with a fly ball to right field. What had the A’s been doing on offense all this time? Nothing. Since the error that scored their only run, they made eighteen consecutive outs. My scorebook almost looked like a perfect game because the three batters who reached base were at the bottom of the order in the third inning. The fan who wears the suit to every game said hello to me before disappearing into the crowd. The Indians brought in a relief pitcher for the bottom of the ninth inning. Burns saw three pitches and hit a ground ball for a 4-3 out. Lawrie got the count to 3-2 before also hitting into a 4-3 out. Reddick did the same thing as Lawrie for the last out of the game. The game began at 6:37 and ended at 9:11. The game time temperature was 63 degrees, and the attendance was 28,152. It was another lackluster loss. I didn’t feel much like sticking around for the fireworks display after a loss and with my having to go to work in the morning, so I headed through the crowd to the shuttle bus stop. There was confusion over where the buses were supposed to stop. The fireworks started in the middle of my ride to the BART station. I went up to the station platform to see the finale. All that I really missed were the 90s tunes.

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