Trevor Plouffe’s Two Errors

I watched the Partridge Family episode “The Last of Howard,” and it was a relief to not see Ricky.  I fell asleep while watching game shows.  I headed for the BART station and got to the Coliseum early.  I stood at the gate waiting for it to be opened.  We were given an Authentic Fan Friday pennant and a Marcus Semien cheer card.  I headed for the food trucks and decided to buy a beef bowl.  I watched Stomper play ping pong with some fans as I ate.  I bought a chocolate dessert from Rita’s and headed for my seat.  The tarps had been removed from the third deck, but not many people were sitting up there for this game.  Josh Reddick was playing his first game for the Houston Astros on this night, and the crowded applauded him, and his walk-up song was “Careless Whisper.”  This was advertised as a good pitching matchup.  Kendall Graveman would pitch five innings for the A’s.  He didn’t have a clean inning, but none of the Houston Astros reached third base until the fourth inning.  Meanwhile, Khris Davis gave the A’s a 1-0 lead in the second inning with an impressive home run over the center field wall.  Graveman got into a bases-loaded jam in the fourth inning with a single, a walk with one out, and a batter hit by a pitch.  Graveman got the next two batters out to escape the situation with the 1-0 lead preserved.  I don’t know if the stress of this jam spilled over into the fifth inning, but Graveman did give up a tying home run to the next batter.  He allowed a double with two outs before getting the third out.  He had thrown 74 pitches through five innings, giving up the one run.  Ryan Madson came in for Graveman in the sixth inning.  He got the first two batters out, but then allowed three singles, giving Houston the lead on what Ken Korach described as a funky hit.  Ryan Dull came in to get the third out.  He would run into problems in the seventh inning.  After a Big Head race which Rollie Fingers barely won, Dull got the first out with a fly ball, but then allowed a double to Jose Altuve.  A terrible error by Trevor Plouffe allowed the Astros’ third run to score.  Dull got a strikeout, but then gave up a walk.  Bob Melvin brought in Daniel Coulombe to face a left-handed batter, but then Coulombe annoyingly went to a 3-0 count before allowing a double that brought in two runs, pretty much sealing the game.  Coulombe sure didn’t do what he was supposed to do.  During the seventh inning stretch, we heard “Don’t Stop Till You Get Enough.”  In the third though seventh innings, the A’s got a runner to third base only once, so they weren’t threatening to make a comeback in this game.  Raul Alcantara entered the game in the top of the eighth inning with an ERA of 36.00, and he pitched a clean inning, lowering his ERA to 24.00.  In the bottom of the inning, Marcus Semien had his first hit in a while with a double, but then Rajai Davis, Jed Lowrie, and Khris Davis all followed with strikeouts.  That was their last chance to get back into the game.  In the top of the ninth inning, Alcantara walked the first batter, who was that man Jose Altuve, and then committed a balk.  Plouffe committed another throwing error, allowing another Houston run to score.  A ground ball out advanced the runner to third base.  Alcantara hit the next batter with a pitch, making this inning look uglier.  A sacrifice fly brought in another run, making the score 7-1.  A fly ball to center finally ended the inning.  However, Alcantara had still managed to lower his ERA to 18.00.  The last five runs the Astros had scored were unearned.  The A’s had a little bit left in the bottom of the inning.  Yonder Alonso came in to pinch hit for Ryon Healy, and he made an out.  Plouffe followed with his first home run of the season.  It made up slightly for the two errors.  Matt Joyce pinch hit for Josh Phegley, and he doubled.  However, it was the A’s last gasp, and Mark Canha lined out to center, and then Adam Rosales struck out to end the game.  It sure was an ugly and forgettable game.  It was a bit disturbing that Graveman was taken out of the game early, apparently because something was not right with him.  The game began at 7:07 with a game time temperature of 61 degrees, and it ended at 10:14.  Attendance was 15,385.  I wanted to return home quickly.  Some of the people who died on April 15 include Abraham Lincoln (1865), Jean-Paul Sartre (1980), Raymond Bailey (1988), Greta Garbo (1990), and Joey Ramone (2001).  Today is a birthday for Janice Dickinson (63), Matt Groening (64), and Jane Seymour (67).

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