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A's EARLY LONGBALLS & NO-HIT START WIN RUBBER GAME.....Oakland 5, TIGERS 2, W 9/10/08
Posted on: 09-10-2008

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>>caption:  CUST CRANKED IN T-1ST<<

COMERICA PARK:

    Twelve pitchers combined to
strike-out 22 batters and walk 11
more in a rare CoPa Wednesday
matinee, but it was the A's starter
who was the storyline in Oakland's
5-2 win over the Tigers.
    In his first outing off the DL,
Athletics RHP Sean Gallagher was
pulled from the contest with a 5-0
lead after only 4-IP, one inning shy
of qualifying for the win, even
though he was pitching a no-hitter.
    However, only half of Gallagher's pitches, 44-of-88, were for strikes. He
struck-out a half dozen Tigers, but walked just as many. Gallagher walked
the bases full in both the B-1st and B-4th, retiring eight Detroiters in a row
in between. His pitch count was held low because he'd been on the injured
list due to shoulder fatigue.
    Tiger starter Armando Galarraga (L, 12-6) didn't last more than 4-IP either,
failing for a fourth consecutive start to notch his 13th victory of the season.
Galarraga was tagged for 8-H & 1-W in his second shortest start of the year.
(Galarraga's most limited outing was 3-IP with a ND in a 5-4 loss at Oakland on
June 3rd.)
    Ryan Sweeney (#5) and Jack Cust (#28) hit back-to-back, 2-out solo homers
off Galarraga in the B-1st. Sweeney's sailed three-quarters deep into the RField
seats while Cust went the opposite way just over the inner fence into the LField
bullpen.
    Galarraga pitched out of trouble in the T-2nd and had a fairly calm T-3rd,
but couldn't hold off the A's in the T-4th. Three consecutive 1-out singles produced
an Eric Patterson RBI-1B. One out later, Aaron Cunningham added a 2r1B for a 5-0
Oakland bulge.
    Detroit's only tallies were charged to first A's reliever Jerry Blevins and came
in the B-6th when Oakland employed three pitchers and Detroit got its first hits.
Three straight singles by Miguel Cabrera, Matt Joyce and pinch-hitter Mike Hessman
loaded the bases with none out. After a line-shot double play off the bat of Marcus
Thames, Ryan Raburn gave the Tigs a 2r1B to CField.
    The game ended when Curtis Granderson was doubled-off firstbase after Grandy
had carelessly run halfway to third on a deep flyout to CField by pinch-hitter Magglio
Ordonez.
    The fifth of seven Oakland pitchers, Houston Street was credited with the win
(6-5). Brad Ziegler posted the save (#8), his second over Detroit in 18 hours.
    No Tiger had multiple basehits.
    Sweeney was 2-for-3 and onetime Tiger property Rob Bowen went 2-for-4 for
Oakland.
    The A's took the rubber game of the series to end the very short Tiger homestand.
Oakland's second consecutive win was their fourth in five games, although only their
9th in their last 34 contests.

    OAK     5-8-0, 5-LOB     (W) Street, 6-5; (S) Ziegler, #8
    DET      2-5-0, 9-LOB     (L) Galarraga, 12-6

QUOTEBOOK...

TIGERS MGR JIM LEYLAND:   "This is a disappointing loss...[Galarraga] looks like
he’s starting to burn out a little bit. We’ll see how it plays out—he’s going to
get an extra day before his next start, but he might be running on empty.”

TIGERS SP ARMANDO GALARRAGA:   "Your body starts to get tired. It's a long
season, but there isn't any pain, any soreness. Everything feels good. I feel
pretty strong. [My] velocity's right there. I can throw hard. [I] just [need to]
locate my pitches."

TIGERS CFIELDER CURTIS GRANDERSON:   "I thought the ball was way over the center
fielder’s head, but it is still a dumb mistake on my part (on the game-ending play).
My run didn’t even mean anything, since we were down three, so I had no business
doing that.”

A's SP SEAN GALLAGHER:   "It was a little different out there with all those walks
and strikeouts and no hits. I felt good and my arm didn’t bother me at all. I missed
the plate on a few pitches, but I was able to come back and make quality pitches
to get outs.”

A's MGR BOB GEREN:   "[Gallagher] pitched pretty well, but he had to battle his
command as you can see from the strange strikeout and walk totals. He was
able to make his pitches when he needed them—he’s going to be one of the
good young pitchers in this league...Getting the two homers in the first in a
big ballpark was huge for us. We got some key hits when we needed them and
then the pen held them down.”

EXTRA INNINGS:

    Granderson's B-9th single (the only Tiger basehit outside of the B-6th) ended his
0-for-14 slump.
    Tiger rookie RHP Chris Lambert made his first big league relief appearance,
retiring both batters he faced with 1-K to open the T-7th.
    The Tigers used three different 3Bmen in the game with Jeff Larish starting,
Hessman entering after he'd pinch-hit, and Raburn moving over from 2Base after
Placido Polanco had hit for Hessman.
    The Athletics starting line-up included six rookies. Detroit's featured four
players who spent time this year at 3A Toledo plus two more recent Mud Hen
graduates.
    Gallagher's start ended a string of 19 consecutive starts by Oakland lefthanders.
The last RHander to start for the A's was Gallagher on August 19th at Minnesota,
then he went on the disabled list.
    Cust struck-out swinging to open the T-5th vs first Tiger reliever Bobby Seay.
That gave Cust 173 strikeouts this year, two short of the Oakland record of 175
set by Jose Canseco in 1986.
    Seay pitched a perfect two innings in the T-5th & T-6th, striking-out five of the
six men he faced.
    Detroit went only 3-&-6 against Oakland in 2008 with a 3-&-3 even split at home.
    The Tigers visit the Chicago White Sox this weekend in a 3-game series opening
Friday night. LHP John Danks (10-8) is Friday's WSox scheduled starter with the
two others TBA. Detroit's probables are Justin Verlander (10-15), Kenny Rogers
(9-13) and Zach Miner (8-4).  

COACH KURT

                                                                  ###    
                   

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