Marcus Semien’s Grand Slam

I had heard in the morning about the death of Jeanne Moreau, but a little later I heard about the death of Sam Shepard.  I will remember him for “Days of Heaven” and “The Right Stuff.”  I placed an order for a replacement for my cell phone and shopped for groceries before going to work.  I heard the news that Adam Rosales and Sonny Gray had been traded.  My shift ended and I rushed to catch the bus, but barely missed it.  I had to wait until 6:20 for the bus to the Ashby BART station.  I caught the 6:35 train and got to the Coliseum at 6:55.  This was an instance where the season ticket holder line was very helpful, as I avoided the crowded gates and was also able to get one of the last Welcome to the Beast Bay T-shirts that were given away, although it was an XL.  I was able to get to my seat a moment before the first pitch by Paul Blackburn.   He got the first two batters of the game out, but then gave up a double and a single, so the Giants were quickly ahead, 1-0.  The A’s came back in the bottom of the inning.  Matt Joyce walked, Marcus Semien singled, and Jed Lowrie singled to tie the score at 1-1, and then Khris Davis lined out to left field, but Semien scored the A’s second run on the play.  Yonder Alonso walked, but Ryon Healy and Bruce Maxwell made outs to end the inning.  Blackburn put up two clean innings in the middle of eight consecutive outs before he ran into trouble in the fourth inning.  With one out, he allowed four consecutive singles for two runs, putting the Giants ahead, 3-2.  Blackburn allowed a walk with one out in the fifth inning, but then Bruce Maxwell threw out the runner attempting to steal second base on a strikeout pitch.  Blackburn had a clean sixth inning.  The A’s were stuck on two runs through the fifth inning.  They had two singles and a walk in the third, but Khris Davis had hit into a double play.  They squandered a double from Lowrie in the fifth inning, as he was stranded at third base.  The bottom of the sixth inning started with a walk from Bruce Maxwell.  Matt Chapman made an out, but Rajai Davis pinch-hit for Jaycob Brugman and doubled.  Ken Korach on the radio had described Rajai as being resurgent with the good stretch he has had.  Matt Joyce walked on a 3-2 pitch to load the bases, and after a pitching change, Marcus Semien produced the highlight of the night, a grand slam to put the A’s ahead, 6-3.  The bratty kid sitting behind me, who had been yelling “Go Giants” all night, still did not shut up.  Lowrie walked, but Khris Davis hit into another double play to end the inning.  In the Big Head race, Dennis Eckersley held off Rickey Henderson to win.  The short Rollie Fingers looked incapable of winning.  Blackburn started the top of the seventh inning by giving up a double.  He then caught a ground ball and caught the runner between second and third base, throwing to Semien for the out.  A single put runners at first and third with one out, and so Bob Melvin brought in Daniel Coulombe to face the left-handed hitters coming up.  Coulombe gave up a single that scored a run, struck out his second batter, and then gave up another single that scored another run.  The score was now an uncomfortable 6-5, and that was it for Coulombe.  Melvin called upon Liam Hendriks who got the strikeout to end the inning.  During the seventh inning stretch, we heard “Dazz.”  In the bottom of the inning, Maxwell doubled with two outs, and Chapman walked on four pitches, but Rajai Davis struck out.  Hendriks pitched well in the top of the eighth, getting a clean inning.  He had decreased his ERA from 3.65 to 3.47 with his four outs.  In the bottom of the inning, Matt Joyce again walked on a 3-2 pitch.  Semien struck out and Lowrie flied out to right.  Khris Davis walked, and Chad Pinder came in to pinch-run for him.  After a pitching change, Yonder Alonso walked to load the bases.  Ryon Healy looked like he was ready to do something, and he did, as he singled in two runs to give the A’s the cushion they sought, as the score was now 8-5.  Maxwell struck out to end the inning, but the A’s fans were now feeling good about this game.  Blake Treinen took the mound for the top of the ninth inning.  He went to a 3-2 count to the first batter before giving up a single.  A 3-6 force play was the first out.  A line drive out to Pinder in right field was the second out.  Treinen struck out the next batter to end the game.  The game had started at 7:08 with a game time temperature of 64 degrees, and it ended at 10:34.  We had seen a pie-eating contest, and the crowd briefly attempted The Wave at 9:47.  The Banjo Man was in the stands on this night.  I listened to the postgame radio show as I made my way out of the stadium.  Because of my late arrival, I didn’t visit the food trucks and just bought a pizza from one of the vendors.  I briefly thought of visiting the team store to see if they were selling Sonny Gray merchandise at a discount.  I just went home.  I didn’t really want to think about the Sonny Gray trade after I’d heard so much about it during the day.  I missed Stephen Colbert and any jokes he might have made about The Mooch.  The Mooch certainly didn’t have his job for very long, barely giving us time to make Bohemian Rhapsody jokes about him.  Matthew McConaughey was on the show.  I saw that UPS had delivered my California football tickets while I was out.  Some of the people who died on August 1 include Calamity Jane (1903), Frances Farmer (1970), Strother Martin (1980), Paddy Chayefsky (1981), Pola Negri (1987), and Marie Trintignant (2003).  Today is a birthday for Dhani Harrison (39), Coolio (54), and Chuck D. (57).  According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for August 1, “Rear Window” was released in 1954.  In 1964, the Beatles had the Number One single, “A Hard Day’s Night.”  Also in 1964, Johnny Burnette drowned in a boating accident.  In 1977, “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” was released.

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