Sean Nolin’s Need to Change His Speed

I awoke and watched a CBS Sunday Morning segment about millennials. Later there would be a segment about Julianna Margulies. My mother gave me an early phone call and asked me what my students were like. I went out to buy some groceries and watched the Partridge Family episode “Danny and the Mob” before heading out to the Coliseum for the last A’s home game of the year. I took another look at the tent sale but couldn’t find a hoodie in my size. I didn’t feel like buying a Jonny Gomes shirt, so I headed for my seat. The usher in my section told me she liked seeing me all during the season and would miss me. Barry Zito signed some autographs, but I didn’t fight the crowd to get one. Before the start of the game, we would see a ceremony honoring The Big Three. Mark Mulder showed up and wore an A’s jersey, but not a cap. Sean Nolin was the starting pitcher for the A’s. He started the game with a strikeout, but then gave up two singles. A fly ball and a force play ended the inning. The A’s would do nothing on offense for the first three innings. In the second inning, Nolin gave up three consecutive singles to load the bases with no outs. A single, a sacrifice fly to center, and another single made the score 3-0. A fly ball to right ended the inning. In the third inning, Nolin gave up another single. A ground out put the runner at second base, but an error by Brett Lawrie put runners at first and third. Nolin walked the next batter to load the bases with one out, and Bob Melvin made a pitching change, bringing in Arnold Leon. A sacrifice fly and then another single made the score 5-0. A ground ball ended the inning. Leon would have a clean fourth inning, which was a rarity over this weekend. We saw the last Dot Race of the season. It seemed that White won a lot and Green hardly at all. In the bottom of the inning with one out, Mark Canha doubled, Josh Reddick walked, and Danny Valencia was hit by a pitch to load the bases, but Stephen Vogt hit into a 3-6-4 double play. In the first inning, the radio announcers were critical of Valencia not running hard to first base. He would be replaced in the game by Max Muncy. Leon got through the top of the fifth inning allowing just a walk with one out. The radio announcers said that he had pitched well and might have a role with next year’s team. During the bottom of the inning, Mark Mulder appeared on the radio to reminisce about old days. He would talk for quite a while. Billy Butler and Brett Lawrie both singled, but then Sam Fuld hit into a double play that looked like it killed the inning. However, Marcus Semien walked, and a fly ball from Billy Burns dropped in for one of those Coliseum doubles for two runs. Canha made an out, ending the inning. We saw a pie eating contest featuring two characters from the bleachers, including one guy who looked like he stepped out of “House Party.” The pies looked like they had thick crusts. Dan Otero pitched a clean sixth inning. We saw the Air Guitar Cam. It seemed that hardly anyone was moving their fingers to different frets. Reddick started the bottom of the sixth inning with a single. Muncy tripled for one run, and Vogt singled to bring the A’s to within 5-4. However, Butler, Lawrie, and Fuld all made outs, and so the A’s were unable to catch the Giants. In the last Big Head race of the season, Rollie Fingers raced past the pack by a wide margin to win for the 25th time. Rickey Henderson ended the year with 17 wins, and Dennis Eckersley had 12. The fan behind me thought that Eck would not return next year. Otero allowed a single with one out in the seventh inning, but got the second out. Daniel Coulombe got the last out. In the bottom of the inning with one out, Burns singled and went to second base on a throwing error, but Canha and Reddick were unable to bring him in. Coulombe allowed two single to start the eighth inning, but then Bob Melvin brought in Edward Mujica, who got the next three batters out. After some maneuvering before the bottom of the inning, Eric Sogard came to bat as a pinch-hitter, but he struck out. Vogt grounded out and Butler flied out to end the inning with the A’s still behind 5-4 with three outs left in the final home game of the year. Fernando Rodriguez pitched a clean ninth inning, handling a ground ball himself in getting the first out. We saw the Belushi Animal House video clip for the last time. Lawrie lined out to center. Fuld struck out. Coco Crisp pinch-hit for Semien, and he got to a full count before drawing a walk. Billy Burns struck out to end this last home game. With only 34 wins at home, it was the second worst season for home games in Oakland A’s history, with a winning percentage of only .420. In 1979, they won only 31 home games for a winning percentage of .383. This game began at 1:07 with a game time temperature of 74 degrees, and it ended at 4:18. The attendance was 36,067. The fan behind me tapped me on the shoulder and asked me if I was going to be back next year. If one of the fans’ theories is true, then Coco Crisp won’t be back next year because I saw one of his T-shirts at the tent sale. The radio announcers commented on Nolin’s need to change the speed of his pitchers more because the Giants were coming up to back too confident that they could hit him. I went home to listen to the Robert Hilburn Rock ‘n’ Roll Times radio program on KCSN. He played songs from the latest Don Henley album, and ended with songs from Peter Gabriel’s “So.” I saw the beginning of a Columbo episode with Ross Martin in it. I think it was “Suitable for Framing.” I felt too sleepy to stay up and do any writing. I fell asleep listening to a football game on the radio. It seemed that the Broncos were going to win over the Lions. Some of the people who died on September 28 include Edwin Hubble (1953), Harpo Marx (1964), Miles Davis (1991), Elia Kazan (2003), and Arthur Penn (2010). Today is a birthday for Naomi Watts (47), Mira Sorvino (48), Moon Zappa (48), and Brigitte Bardot (81).  According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for September 28, “My Friend Irma,” the first movie to feature the comedy team of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, premiered in New York in 1949.  In 1980, Carl Sagan’s “Cosmos” debuted on PBS.  In 1991, Miles Davis died after a stroke at age 65.

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