OAKLAND — The A’s had little success breaking through against Jake Arrieta on Saturday, but their biggest concern coming out of a 4-0 loss to the Cubs is an injury that knocked Sonny Gray from the game.
Gray left after five innings with right extensor muscle soreness in his upper forearm. TV replays showed Gray grimacing and biting his glove after a fifth-inning strikeout of Dexter Fowler, though there wasn’t any immediate indication of what was bothering him. He said after the game that his forearm began bothering him in the fourth, and he felt it again after striking out Fowler with a curve.
In a season where the A’s roster has been ravaged by injuries, resulting in 24 disabled list transactions, any significant physical problem with Gray would be particularly troubling. Despite his struggles this season, he remains one of the most prominent players on their roster.
A’s hitters, meanwhile, have had little success breaking through in the first two games of this three-game set against the major leagues’ winningest team this season. Arrieta (13-5) held them to three hits over eight innings, registering his first win since June 27. In Friday’s opener, Jon Lester held them to two runs over seven innings of a 7-2 Cubs win.
Starting pitching report
Gray (5-11) turned in a solid outing until leaving after 72 pitches. The only runs he allowed came on Ben Zobrist’s two-out, two-run single up the middle in the third. That came after the right-hander worked out of a one-out jam with two runners in scoring position in the second. Most importantly, he avoided letting a bad inning snowball on him. Now the question is how much time he misses, if any, with his injury.
Gray absorbed his 11th loss to establish a new a career high.
Liam Hendriks took over for Gray to start the sixth and allowed two runs that pushed Chicago’s led to 4-0. Anthony Rizzo hit a leadoff double and came around to score on Addison Russell’s infield single. Jorge Soler’s double down the left field line brought home Russell. Lefty Patrick Schuster, recalled from Triple-A Saturday when Dillon Overton was sent down, delivered two scoreless innings.
At the plate
The A’s didn’t advance a runner past second base all afternoon. Their only hits were a second-inning double from Alonso, a single from Marcus Semien in the fifth, Ryon Healy’s single in the eighth and Khris Davis’ single in the ninth.
In the field
Healy made a nice play to back Gray in the second. With runners on second and third and one out, he fielded Soler’s chopper and threw a strike to home to nail Zobrist trying to score.
On the flip side, Coco Crisp and Jake Smolinski let a routine fly ball drop between them in the ninth.
The announced crowd was 32,358.
Sean Manaea (3-6, 4.68) matches up against Kyle Hendricks (10-7, 2.22) in the finale of this three-game series Sunday. First pitch is set for 1:05 p.m.