Marty Lurie Talks San Francisco Giants Baseball

A's and Lidle Get Game One, Giants Blame Grissom For Loss

The week got off to a rollicking start with the A’s following their second half blue print in a 4-3 win over Anaheim, while the Giants lost to the Dodgers after Jason Schmidt let a 3-0 lead get away.

Cory Lidle faced 26 batters, he started 17 off with strikes, he was in command after the first inning after falling behind 3-0 in the game, the deficit caused by a three run homer off the bat of Troy Glaus.

The A’s broke through against the Angels bull pen, tying the game off Scott Schoenwiess and winning in the ninth against Alan Levine.

More importantly, Brenden Donnelly, Anaheim’s best righty pitched two innings in game one. Donnelly will be needed throughout the series and the A’s were glad to get him into the first one, as he threw 23 pitches.

The Giants lost 7-6 almost tying the game in the ninth, but were denied when Marquis Grissom robbed Rich Aurilia of a home run with an over the fence snag of Aurilia’s blast to center field.

Today, both races are even and more excitement is due, let’s see.Once again Art Howe made a key move in the game, walking Orlando Palmiero with first base open, a runner on second, and one out in the sixth, bringing up slow footed Bengie Molina in a 3-2 game. Howe also did the same in the Mariner series, in that game he ordered a similar the move in the second inning and Ben Davis cooperated with a double play grounder.

Last night’s move worked and quelched a budding rally. Molina immediately obliged by hitting the second pitch to Mark Ellis who started the 4-6-3 double play. Lidle made the pitch he needed to, making the manager a genius.

Next inning, Ray Durham tied the game with a righthanded homer (his weaker side) off the lefty Schoenweiss. Last time I saw Durham do this was against lefty Mike Magnante right here in Oakland, spoiling a move by the A’s and Howe.

How about Billy Koch warming up in the 8th wearing the wrong color uniform top? When Koch was informed of his oversight he wanted to go and immediately change his shirt without finishing his warm ups. After being convinced that the proper (green) uniform top could be brought to the dugout, Koch finished his warmups, sprinted to the bench, changed shirts, then came out and pitched a beautiful ninth, getting the win when Miguel Tejada singled to end the game.

Just another day at the park for Koch.

Ricardo Rincon threw a scoreless eighth using only 12 pitches. Let’s see what he has today, since he hasn’t been as sharp in back to back appearances.

Tonight Mark Mulder goes against Jarrod Washburn. Mulder told me he pitched badly in his last start against Anaheim on Thursday, still he had the team in postion to win the game. He pitches today on normal rest, Washburn is moved up on three days rest.

Washburn threw 100 pitches in 7.3 innings on Friday night against Texas. He probably will be limited to a similar amount tonight, meaning hello Angel bull pen.

This is the scenario the A’s wanted to see coming out of last night’s game, get into the Angel pen early on Monday, force Scoscia to bring the pen back in the middle innings on Tuesday.

By bringing Washburn back early, it almost guarantees that the A’s will be in the Anaheim pen by the seventh inning. Thus, Donnelly’s two innings in a losing cause becomes significant when assessing his availability tonight and tomorrow.

With lightly regarded Mickey Callaway pitching for the Angels Wednesday against Barry Zito, you know the Angels will be in their pen once again by the sixth inning.

So, you get the idea. The A’s now throw their big three and the Angels have to walk through a pitching mine field, with not only the A’s starters, but piecing together their own effective bull pen for the next three days because they will need it, you can count on it.

The A’s have faced Washburn twice this year in April, hitting him for 8 runs and 12 hits in 11 innings. The Angels have beaten the last five lefties that have started against them and have scored more than two runs against every lefty starter in the last ten games other than David Wells, who held them to 2 runs in 7.3 innings.

So, Mulder has his work cut out for him in holding down this line up.

The Giants let one get away last night and this morning are blaming everyone in LA for the loss except themselves. Schmidt gave up a grand slam to Brian Jordan on a pitch right down the middle of the plate putting the Dodgers ahead 4-3.

Unbelievably, Barry Bonds homered off Jesse Orosco with a man on base, cutting the Dodger lead to 6-5 in the 7th.

Hello, Jim Tracy, never pitch to this guy. How many homers do you have to see him hit before you realize he can change the game with one swing of the bat?

Feix Rodriguez gave up a homer to Eric Karros giving the Dodgers their seventh run and they needed it to win the game.

Eric Gagne came in in the 8th and almost blew the lead in the ninth. Let’s see what he has left in this series. These closers who are used to working one inning, don’t respond well to an inning and two thirds or more.

Tonight, it’s Kirk Reuter against Omar Daal. I still think the Giants will get it done in LA, but they need some help on offense from Reggie Sanders, you just can’t rely on Bonds and Jeff Kent every night.

Kevin Brown is through for the year. Meaning a win for SF tonight, pits them against rookie Kevin Beirne tomorrow. Good scenario for the Giants.

The A’s left runners all over the Coliseum last night. Eric Chavez may break through tonight, he had good hitting counts last night and just missed smacking one off the center field wall with the bases loaded.

It’s nice to see a center fielder who really covers ground in the outfield like Darin Erstad does. He robbed Chavez of a triple with that catch.

Hint to Billy Beane, get a legit center fielder next year, it helps the pitching staff win games and might take the pressure off Terrence Long allowing him to concentrate on offense.

Tonight, more of the same gripping drama. Mulder 17-7 against Washburn 18-5, these two lefties could open up the ALCS if the Yankees and the Twins are not careful.

Omar Daal and Kirk Reuter and plenty of others, the others will decide tonight’s game in LA.

I’m enjoying this week.


1 Anonymous { 09.17.02 at 6:20 pm }

I think Mike made some crucial errors.

He took out Sheilds when he was rolling and brought in Shoeneweis who has been inconsistent in every role given to him. The only reason I can figure he didnt let Sheilds go another inning was to save him for tonight. Also Not pinch hitting for Bengie Molina. Defensive cue’s didn’t help other. Overall a very bad game for the angels yet it was winnable.

That game was very winnable for the Angels but it didn’t happen. Even so if the A’s pull off a sweep the Angels are still in great position for the wildcard and I’d rather go off against the Yankees than go to the Metrodome and face those twins.

The A’s left alot on base and if that continues to happen, we’ll probably have a few more exciting games.

IMO “getting into the Angel pen” is great for the Angels as long as its managed right. In that situation like last night, Shoeneeweis probably should’ve been saved for Chavez but thats just me. Also Al Levine should never be used in a close game or in the 8th inning and beyond.

Where was Eckstein on the game winning hit? That totally could’ve been an inning ending DP.

Miguel “MVP” Tejada struck out a few times at pitches in the dirt, it was reminiscient of Darin Erstad. I Hope Miguel continues to do throughout this series…

When Shawn Wooten hit 3 doubles was that the night Cory Lidle pitched? Perhaps Shawn Wooten being absent from the lineup is why that game was lost Who knows.


2 marty { 09.17.02 at 6:45 pm }


Good analysis I think there is more than a reasonable chance that these two teams could meet in the ALCS. Ben Weber will play a part in tonight’s game. I agree with your assessmnet of Levine, not enough stuff to close a game or keep one close.


3 Anonymous { 09.17.02 at 8:15 pm }

With the Angels starting Washburn tonight to setup their playoff rotation, any idea on how/when the A’s will make a similar (if at all) adjustmen to their rotation? As it stands Zito pitches the last game of the season. I would hate for the A’s to have to start off the ALDS with one of the first 2 starters being Lidle. Also, what would the rotation be (in your opinion)if they play Minessota and what for NY? 3 or 4 man rotations?

4 marty { 09.18.02 at 2:08 am }

Your question will be the one Art Howe must answer within the next week. My guess is that Hudson will get to start the Minnesota series if the other two starters are needed at all the last weekend. The A’s trust Hudson and he probably would start one of the two games in NY if the A’s play there. I am going to say the A’s will definitely use a three man rotation in the ALDS.

5 Anonymous { 09.22.07 at 1:14 pm }

6 Anonymous { 09.22.07 at 1:51 pm }

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