A's late-game rally thwarted by early mistakes in loss to Rangers


The theme of the Athletics’ season so far this year has been “fight,” and they showed plenty of it against the Texas Rangers on Monday.

Unfortunately, it was too little, too late for Oakland.

Despite exploding for six runs in the eighth inning at Globe Life Field, the A’s dropped the series opener to the Rangers after coming up just short, 10-8.

Had Oakland played mistake-free baseball in the innings leading up to their offensive onslaught, the game would have been a statement win for a team that desperately needed it.

Still, A’s manager Mark Kotsay was inspired by his team’s comeback, which saw them nearly climb their way out of a 10-2 hole.

“To have an opportunity to win that game from where we were, again, I’ve said for most of the season that this team shows that fight to get back into games,” Kotsay told reporters after the loss, which brought Oakland to 29-59 on the year. “They did that tonight. It was probably our best offensive, or one of our best offensive innings this season, you know?” 

“Takeaway is we lost the game. We didn’t pitch well enough early in the game. Normally we play a clean game and defense, so I think those are the mistakes that led to us being down by eight runs and unfortunately we couldn’t claw back.”

A’s starter Adrián Martínez was tagged with the loss after giving up four earned runs on four hits and four walks over 4 1/3 innings.

A balk followed by a wild pitch by the 25-year-old righty in the second inning gave the Rangers an early pair of runs, and later in the game, Texas third baseman Josh H. Smith extended their lead with a two-run, inside-the-park home run in the sixth.

Smith’s speedy trip around the bases came on a tough play for A’s center fielder Ramón Laureano, who attempted to come in on a sinking line drive. As he went down to his knees to try and make the catch, the ball got past him and rolled all the way to the wall.

RELATED: A's GM Forst explains why Montas trade hasn't happened

“Anytime -- and I can speak from this personal experience -- you’re diving forward, it’s really hard. It’s uncomfortable,” Kotsay said of Laureano’s effort, which ultimately ended up being one of the game’s difference-makers. “In Ramón’s case, that ball -- he’s in a situation where it’s do or die and unfortunately, it got by him.

“I know he’s upset about it, but it’s not the easiest play as an outfielder when you’re coming full speed and trying to leave your feet going forward making a catch.”

The A’s lineup showed incredible grit to make the score as close as it was, with Sheldon Neuse, Chad Pinder and Laureano all homering in the loss. Pinder and Laureano went yard during Oakland’s big six-run eighth, with Pinder’s three-run shot putting the A’s within striking distance.

Even though it wasn’t enough in the end, Oakland will get another chance on Tuesday with Game 2 of the three-game set at Globe Life Field set for 5:05 p.m. PT.

Contact Us