On Friday, the Oakland A took aim at Target Field and hit a target.
The four A hitters had a comfortable 6-1 victory over the Minnesota Twins in Game 1 of a weekend series. This is the fourth time in as many tries that the As have beaten the Twins this year.
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All races for both clubs were tagged via dingers. Oakland started in the 3rd inning, when Ramon Laureano went deep.
In the 5, Sean Murphy got all of one, with a runner based courtesy of a starting walk.
In the 6th, it was a two-exit walk, followed by a Stephen Piscotty.
In the 8, Mark Canha came to pinch, and he was unleashed.
That was pretty much the game. The As’s dispersed three more hits and two more walks, but the story was the homers. Their exit speeds were 103.8 mph (Laureano), 107.3 mph (Murphy), 105.7 mph (Piscotty) and 94.4 mph (Canha), with Piscotty in the lead at 412 feet. Murphy went 408 and he also added another flyout of the same distance and almost the same monstrous exit bike.
Another note on programming: Chad Pinder came off the bench like a pinch hitter and drew a walk. He was activated from the injured list today after recovering from a sprained left knee.
A’s launch staff had to deal with the former Oakland star Josh Donaldson, the Bringer of Rain, but they held on.
Entrance Frankie Montas sailed six rounds, with his only error coming from a Donaldson solo circuit. On another occasion, Donaldson proposed a rally shuffle and relied on double play.
- Montas: 6 ip, 1 course, 4 Ks, 1 BB, 1 HR, 4 coups, 94 lancers, 87,5 mph EV
The Twins have only hit a few hard balls against Montas, who has managed his fifth quality start in eight appearances so far this year.
The bullpen was just as effective. Burch Smith allowed a few hits but worked around them, Yusmeiro Small was perfect, and Lou Trivino posted a walk but otherwise finished 9th.
Oakland staff have allowed just 20 points overall in their last seven games, and eight of them were lost last night.
The A’s hit for a lot of power tonight and pitched well, and now they’ve won three of four on their current road trip. And they haven’t even added Pinder to the starting lineup yet. Keep surfing this wave!