Matt Chapman’s Clutch 2-Homer Game

I stayed inside during the morning because of the heat wave. I walked over to the record store and bought a used copy of the Rolling Stones’ “Between the Buttons” album, the U.S. version with “Let’s Spend the Night Together” and “Ruby Tuesday” instead of “Back Street Girl” and “Please Go Home.” I caught the bus to the BART station and headed to the Coliseum. I sat on a bench instead of waiting in line. Once they let us in, I saw that the A’s weren’t having batting practice, so I browsed through the team store before heading to the food trucks. I bought a lamb gyro and a sorbet spritzer. I went over to my seat. One of the ushers told me that she had suffered a sprained ankle which prevented her from being at some games. IT was Indian Heritage Night, and some dancers were out in centerfield before the start of the game in colorful costumes. Mike Fiers was the starting pitcher for the A’s, so the fans thought that the A’s had a good chance of winning this game with the Astros. Fiers pitched a good first three innings, allowing only a walk to the first batter of the game. With two outs in the fourth inning, he gave up a single and a home run, giving Houston a 2-0 lead. In the bottom of the inning, the A’s did come back. Robbie Grossman doubled, and Matt Chapman reached on a fielder’s choice, as the pitcher threw to second base but too high, allowing Grossman to get back to the base. Matt Olson hit a 3-2 for a home run for a 3-2 lead. Khris Davis and Stephen Piscotty made outs, but Corban Joseph hit the first pitch he saw for his first major league home run and a 4-2 score. In the top of the fifth inning, Fiers allowed a home run to the first batter, and a single to the next before getting three consecutive outs, so the score was 4-3. In the bottom of the inning, Chris Herrmann walked, and a 5-4 force play turned into a 5-4-3 double play after the Astros challenged the ruling. Grossman struck out. In the top of the sixth inning, Fiers allowed just one hit with one out, but that one hit was another home run, tying the score at 4-4. In the bottom of the inning, the A’s answered again, as Chapman and Olson both hit home runs, putting the A’s ahead, 6-4. Davis swung at the first pitch and made an out. Piscotty walked and Corban singled, but after a pitching change, Pinder lined into a double play. In the top of the seventh inning, Fiers allowed another home run, making the score 6-5 and prompting Bob Melvin to make a pitching change to Yusmeiro Petit. He allowed a walk before getting the next three batters out. During the seventh inning stretch, we briefly heard Stevie Wonder’s “Uptight.” The A’s were quiet in the bottom of the inning, with Herrmann, Semien, and Grossman making the outs. Blake Treinen went out to the mound for the top of the eighth inning. He got Jose Altuve out on one pitch, but then he gave up a home run, tying the score at 6-6 and denying Mike Fiers the chance for a win. Treinen got a pop out, and then Melvin brought in Jake Diekman, who got a ground ball to end the inning. In the bottom of the inning, the A’s answered yet again, as Matt Chapman hit a home run into the left field bleachers for a 7-6 lead. I glanced over at an old woman wearing an Astros hat, and she left her seat. Olson, Davis, and Piscotty all struck out, and so Liam Hendriks had to protect a one-run lead in the ninth inning. Dustin Garneau replaced Herrmann as the catcher, and it turned out to be a clean inning for Hendriks. The last out of the game was a ground ball to Chapman. He, Olson, and Pinder had made good defensive plays during the game. A total of ten home runs were hit in the game, a record for a game at the Coliseum. Both teams hit five home runs. For the A’s, Chapman and Olson both hit two, and Joseph had the other. Fiers gave up four home runs and Treinen gave up one. It had been a long time since Fiers had given up five runs in a game. The A’s pitchers did keep Jose Altuve from getting a hit, as he went 0-for-4 on the night. One negative for the A’s was that Khris Davis went without a hit, as his batting average dropped to .227. This game started at 7:08 with a game time temperature of 82 degrees, and it ended at 9:43. The attendance was 15,323. The crowd was loud and happy after the game. I hurried on home and watched a bit of Stephen Colbert and James Corden before I went to sleep. Some of the people who died on August 16 include Robert Johnson (1938), Babe Ruth (1948), Margaret Mitchell (1949), Bela Lugosi (1956), Elvis Presley (1977), Amanda Blake (1989), Stewart Granger (1993), William Windom (2012), and Aretha Franklin (2018). Today is a birthday for Steve Carell (57), Timothy Hutton (59), Angela Bassett (61), Madonna (61), and James Cameron (65). According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for August 16, Frank Sinatra and Mia Farrow finalized their divorce in 1968. In 1969, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young performed for the first time after Neil Young joined the group, with Joni Mitchell the opening act. In 1986, Madonna celebrated her 28th birthday as she had both the Number One single, “Papa Don’t Preach,” and the Number One album, “True Blue.”

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