What happened?! 18 hits against the Angels? The A's looked like an actual team out there, a good one at that. A 10-1 win for the A's might have been as important for their ego as for the win column. With the Rangers stomping the Mariners on Tuesday, the A's kept the division as close as ever with a win of their own. The Rangers now lead the Angels by a half game and the A's by one game. The Mariners are eight games back.
It's only June, but if a team gets out in front a couple games, it could give them the confidence they need to pull away and maintain a lead over the weakest division in the league. The team I'm talking about is the Angels. Sure the Rangers are a dangerous team and can go on a tear if they get hot at the plate, but they don't have the experience of winning a division. The Angels have experience, they have a great coach, and are a proven franchise. That's why tonight's win was so important. To keep the division close.
Talking about the division diverts attention from the fact that the A's pounded out 18 hits. Of those hits, two were home runs and the rest were singles. Talk about putting singles together. That's also good hitting. Taking the pitches given and putting them in play. And then there were the three stolen bases. None were by Rajai Davis who got the day off. Gabe Gross, Eric Patterson, and even Mark Ellis got in on the action, stealing a base each.
Another intriguing aspect of the game of the game is the continuing success of Ryan Sweeney at the plate. Still showing little power, Sweeney has shown consistency. A three for five night raised his season average to .324. He also scored three runs.
The A's have a couple gems in Sweeney and Kurt Suzuki, but they'll need help from the supporting cast for the A's to have success this season. This was shown tonight as every starter recorded a hit except for the slumping Cliff Pennington. Six had multiple hits. The A's won't perform like this on a regular basis, but a night like this is nice once in a while. The only bad thing is it wasted a fine performance by Vin Mazzaro and the bullpen.