Khris Davis’ Walk-Off Home Run

I took the 57 bus out towards the Coliseum, but I got off at the Fruitvale BART station and took the train the rest of the way.  I saw the food trucks in the parking lot.  If I got in line to get my Rickey Henderson jersey, I couldn’t visit the food trucks to get my Italian ice.  Well, I got in the line and sat down to listen to a Bob Dylan album as I waited for the gates to open.  It seemed that they had too many boxes of the Extra Large jerseys.  I got the Medium size.  I looked around for something to eat and settled for the Colossal Dog and Loaded Tots with a bottle of water.  Eventually, a family would sit in the row behind me, and the father annoyingly tried to predict every pitch.  He almost told his daughter some wrong things about pitching to a pitcher.  The ninth hitter in an American League lineup is not the pitcher because of the designated hitter, which he apparently forgot about.  I heard the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment on KCBS at 4:51.  An hour later, the man of the day, Rickey Henderson went out to the mound to throw out the first pitch to Rajai Davis.  Casey Rico sang the national anthem, and then we heard Chicago’s “Saturday in the Park” before the first pitch.  Kara Tsuboi was back from having her baby.  Paul Blackburn started the game for the A’s with an ERA of 0.66, and over the first three innings, he reduced that number to 0.54, as he allowed only a two-out single in the first inning, had a clean second inning, and allowed a single and a walk in the third, but was helped out by an overturned call of a stolen base.  The A’s had only one player reach base in the first three innings against the Indians, but it was enough to give them the lead, as it was Matt Chapman’s first major league home run.  However, Blackburn could not get the shutdown inning in the fourth, as he walked the first batter and then gave up a home run to give the Indians the 2-1 lead.  Blackburn gave up a single and a wild pitch before getting out of the ending, which ended with his ERA now at 1.53.  After the fifth inning, it went down to 1.45, as Blackburn allowed a walk with one out, with the runner stealing second base.  We saw The Big Three Race, which we did not see on Friday night.  In the bottom of the fifth inning, Ryon Healy and Bruce Maxwell struck out, so it seemed that the inning was going nowhere, but then Chapman doubled and Rajai Davis singled to tie the score at 2-2, with Rajai going to second base on the throw home.  Matt Joyce made an out to end the inning.  A fan trying to hit wiffle ball home runs started to get some boos, but eventually he hit five to win a watch.  Blackburn again could not get the shutdown inning, which started with a four-pitch walk.  He got to a 3-2 count before giving up a single, which pushed the runner to third base.  A ground base with Marcus Semien shifted gave the Indians a 3-2 lead, and Semien was unable to start a double play, just getting the first out at first base.  Another ground out moved the runner to third base, but Blackburn got another ground ball to end the inning.  This was the end of his afternoon on the mound, with his ERA at 1.83.  The A’s did nothing in the bottom of the sixth inning.  In the Big Head Race, Rickey Henderson predictably won, but by a very large margin.  The Big Head Rickey Henderson was visible everywhere in the stadium, from Shibe Park Tavern to the stands, on this day.  Liam Hendriks pitched the top of the seventh inning, and he had a good, clean inning, getting a strikeout on a 95 mph fastball on a 3-2 count.  The A’s again did nothing in the bottom of the inning, with Lowrie striking out for the second time, and Maxwell striking out for the third time.  Daniel Coulombe pitched a clean inning in the top of the eighth, with two ground balls to first base and one to second base.  The Indians left their pitcher to go beyond 100 pitches and face Chapman a third time, and it turned out to be the wrong decision, as Chapman swung at the first pitch for his second major league home run, tying the score at 3-3.  Ryan Madson, a pitcher that the Washington Nationals were interested in acquiring in a trade, pitched a clean inning in the top of the ninth, although the Indians challenged the second out.  The relief pitchers sure were impressive this afternoon.  In the bottom of the ninth, Yonder Alonso came up to bat.  He had struck out in this previous two chances, but this time got the count to 3-2 before drawing a walk.  The Indians went with a pitching change to get a right-handed pitcher to face Khris Davis.  Was this the right choice, to trade a 1.40 ERA for this matchup?  Davis had a single and two strikeouts earlier in the game.  This time he got the count to 3-2 before hitting a ball out to right centerfield, and it went over the fence for a walk-off home run with a 5-3 final score.  Ken Korach said that this was a gem of a game.  It had started at 6:07 with a game time temperature of 79 degrees, and it ended at 8:42.  The attendance was 33,021.  As we left the stadium, some people were going against the traffic for a show at the Oracle Arena.  I listened to Ethan Hawkes’ Black Album on my way home.  According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for July 16, the movie “Topper” with Cary Grant was released in 1937.  In 1966, Tommy James and the Shondells reached Number One on the singles chart with “Hanky Panky.”  In 1982, “Young Doctors in Love,” starring Sean Young, Harry Dean Stanton, Dabney Coleman, and Patrick Macnee, was released.  In 1993, “Free Willy” was released.

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