A short series gets a short recap so I’ll divide this into the good, the bad, and the ugly.
The good: even in his worst start of the year, Sean Manea still only allowed 2 ER through 5 IP. Yeah they were both home runs, but the Dodger’s lineup is pretty ridiculous even if they are slumping a bit right now. Daniel Mengden looked pretty good, even though he still isn’t reaching his full potential. Has to get that pitch count down but his offxspeed looked good for the most part.
Also good was the hitting in game 2. Marcus Semien finally got tired of striking out in every at bat, Khris Davis found oppo power, Matt Chapman and Jed Lowrie stayed hot, and Matt Olsen shortened up. The explosion on a pretty solid Alex Wood was a welcome sight, especially after domination from a much weaker Ryu the night before.
The bad: Strikeouts. We are still striking out at an absurd rate against pitchers not used to having swing and miss stuff. Ryu struck out 8 in 6 IP on only one hit and only one BB. In watching the game, it looked like all our lineup was doing was sitting fastball and Ryu just kept pumping changeups on the outside corner. He had good stuff and was hitting corners, but there is no way that he should only allow two baserunners through 6 innings of work at the big league level. I’m fine with the strikeouts as long as we are being aggressive in good situations like in game 2.
The Ugly: I don’t want to come down too hard on Trayce Thompson here. I’m a lifelong Warriors fan and I’ll admit, when I heard the A’s signed Klay Thompson’s brother I got a little excited. Even when I looked at Trayce’s stats, he had something like 19 homers in 150 ABs which is an impressive total, even with a sub par batting average. Despite all that, he generally looked terrible. People only watching sports center will see his great leaping catch, which was truly awesome by the way, but not his bad reads or the ball that dropped directly in front of him leading to a score. At the plate, he looked truly out matched in 5 out of his 6 AB’s, striking out three times and popping out weakly with the bases loaded. I have high hopes because of his athleticism and power potential, but he needs to get over his nerves and start making the plays that big leaguers make if he is going to stay up after Powell or Fowler get off the disabled list.
Looking forward, I’m predicting a 3 game sweep of Seattle bringing the team back to 8-8 going into the home stand against Chicago. Yes that’s aggressive, but the bats are awake and an aging Felix Hernandez isn’t going to put them back to sleep.