Oh goodness it's a late afternoon liveglog, unless you are a west coaster, where it is time for a post-lunch A's-Angels game. Hey, is it true that there is almost no humidity in Northern California? I'm literally soaked today in hot and humid New Jersey, but I hear good things about Marin County and the like.
Today, Dana Eveland looks to win the short series for the A's and he'll oppose southpaw Joey Saunders of the Angels. Your lineups can be found here. Wes Bankston done got called up from Triple-A Sacramento to replace Eric Chavez on Oakland's 25 man roster, and he'll get the start today at first base. I may be mistaken, but this seems to be his major league debut.
Rory Markas and Terry Smith are your home team announcers today on XM radio channel 181.
Let's glog! After le jump...
3:35PM: Anyone got any insider-y info on this Bankston kid? I assume the Angels broadcasters won't be much help. Oh, the A's are 4.5 behind the Angels; I'd thought they were closer. Rajaj Davis CF, Mark Ellis 2B, and Bobby Crosby SS will be your top-of-the-first batters. Emil Brown is the cleanup batter for the A's and he has 43 RBI. Oh snap, sexy Hawaiian Kurt Suzuki got the day off.
3:37PM: Here's Davis to lead off against Saunders. First pitch is a strike, and it's 80 degrees in Anaheim. Color me jealous.
3:42PM: Davis flies out to left field, one away. Here's Mark Ellis, who is hitting .167 against lefties, until he notches a one-out single off Saunders. Bobby Crosby up now. Bobby Crosby > Bubba Crosby if only because he is still employed to play baseball. Sorry, A's fans.
3:46PM: Crosby has 52 home runs. In 2000 career at-bats. Can you imagine if the A's had a power hitter in the third spot of the lineup? Mark Ellis steals second as Crosby works a full count. Crosby grounds back to Saunders, who traps Ellis between second at third. RUNDOWN! Aybar tags Ellis out as Crosby reaches on a fielder's choice. Like Sophie's Choice except less crying.
3:47PM: Brown grounds out and the inning is toast.
3:52PM: Chone Figgins, Gary Matthews, and Erick Aybar are your hitters in the bottom of the first against Dana Eveland. The Angels announcers call Chone "Figgy". I do not like this. Figs flies out. Matthews collects a one-out single, and I am left to wonder how a man with a career OPS of .600 is hitting third for the Angels. Bobby Crosby and Erick Aybar may be the two worst three-hole hitters in a single game ever. Aybar grounds to short and Matthews is out at second. Aybar reaches on a fielder's choice. Prince Fielder's choice is a vegetable.
3:57PM: Vlad Guerrero singles past a diving Crosby and Aybar hits third base with two outs. Eveland unleashes a wild pitch that nearly hits Torii Hunter and Aybar scores from third. It's 1-0 Angels.
3:58PM: Hunter flies out to centerfielder Davis and the inning is done. End of first.
4:05PM: DH Jack Cust leads off the second with a line out to Kotchman. Here's Wes Bankston's first ever major league at-bat....in which he strikes out swinging. First K for Saunders on the day. Carlos Gonzalez grounds out to Figz McGee and we're headed to the bottom of the second.
4:08PM: Howie Kendrick leads off with an abbondanza: he doubles off the wall. Here's Casey Kotchman to try and match it with a tonydanza.
4:13PM: Kotchman is certainly not the boss but he did move Kendrick over to third with a groundout. Here's Juan Rivera, who has the most plain name in all of baseball. He's the Joe Smith of Latin baseball players. Rivera grounds to short and Crosby throws it home but it sails past catcher Rob Bowen. 2-0 Angels as Kendrick scores and Rivera reaches on a fielders choice, which is like Tasters Choice, except it doesn't taste like hamster poop.
4:16PM: Still just one out. Weak-hitting catcher Mike Napoli flies out, though, and Figgins grounds out, so the inning is through. End of second.
4:20PM: Weak-hitting catcher Rob Bowen works a full count from Saunders and earns hisself a free walk to first base. Here's weak-hitting third baseman Donnie Murphy, who GIDP's 6-4-3 to erase Bowen's hard work. Davis pops out to end the top of the third. Zzzz.
4:24PM: I realize batting average is a poor yardstick for measuring a hitters prowess, but no Athletic in today's lineup has a batting average above .258, while the league average is like .270 or so. Only Jack Cust is OPS'ing anywhere near .800, by the way. This is not a good hitting team, and neither is Anaheim. Matthews grounds out to start the inning.
4:28PM: This Aybar character may not be a great hitter but he is certainly working the count the second time around. He's seen nine pitches in his at-bat, but he grounds out to third. Here's Vlad. I like Vlad, no doubt, but I wish he was playing with better protection in the lineup. Torii Hunter is more of a B- talent. Vlad lines out to first baseman Bankston, and the inning is over. End of third.
4:33PM: My fantasy second baseman Mark Ellis pops up to start the fourth. No, I don't have dirty dreams about him, he's just on my pretend baseball team. Here's nobody's fantasy shortstop Bobby Crosby who manages to get a base hit through the right side.
4:35PM: Emil Brown, the man of some renown, doubles to right as Crosby moves to third. Matthews gets the ball back in, but the ball gets away and Crosby scores, but Brown is thrown out extending his double to a would-be triple. Score that a double, no RBI, and an error on Matthews. 2-1 Angels.
4:37PM: Saunders gets Cust to strike out and we're going to the bottom of the fourth.
4:42PM: Here's Torii Hunter. He grounds out to first. Eveland has sent down seven Angels in a row. Howie Kendrick is next...my first All Star ballot of the season had Howie Kendrick's name torn out of it and stomped on the ground, but he's moved up to a .310 average with a .761 OPS. Not bad for a second baseman without any tater tots, and just five points below his career numbers. Kendrick strikes out swinging.
4:45PM: Casey Kotchman is hit by a pitch, but does not suffer any career ending injuries so he trots to first base. Juan Rivera flies out and the inning is done. End of fourth.
4:50PM: Wes Bankston has played in 670 career minor league games, as per Messrs. Markas and Smith, and tried to call his parents last night when he found out he was getting called up to play his first major league game. They were sleeping. No word on whether they've woken up yet. Wes grounds out. Poor fella.
4:55PM: Here's Carlos Gonzalez, who works the count full against Saunders, and then grounds out to the shortstop Aybar. The A's have not had a pinch hit since May. The A's have not had an extra base hit by a pinch hitter since 2006. These facts are sad, especially after an extended trip through interleague play where you'd think they pinch hit a bit. Bowen is called out on strikes and we're going to the bottom of the fifth.
4:59PM: Mike Napoli walks to lead off the inning. FYI, this will be my final half-inning of glogging, so enjoy it while you can. Chone Figz is up now...he strikes out swinging to become Eveland's second K victim of the day.
5:03PM: Gary Matthews Jr is your batter. Eveland is up to 80 pitches on the day. Matthews strikes out on a full count, and there's two down with Aybar coming to the dish.
5:05PM: Aybar strikes out and the glog is done. Thanks for joining me today, folks. Y'all make this fun, up until the point when I get anxious and want to leave mid-game. If you really must know what happens for the rest of this affair, head to MLB.com.