Another game, another nightmarish outcome for the A’s, who couldn’t beat it out of Beantown fast enough Wednesday night.
The Red Sox lowered the boom on them once again, this one a 13-3 drubbing that capped a three-game sweep for Boston and closed the book on one of the ugliest series that any A’s pitching staff has endured.
The 40 total runs allowed over three days at Fenway Park broke the Oakland record for most runs given up in a three-game series. The A’s also set an unwanted franchise record by allowing at least 11 runs for the fourth consecutive game.
They’ve dropped five in a row after winning the opener of this nine-game road trip in Baltimore. Opponents have scored a whopping 57 runs total through six games on the trip, an average of more than nine per game. The A’s have dropped 14 of their past 18 overall.
It was a field day all series for Red Sox hitters, but center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. in particular lit up the box score with 13 RBI over the three games, including six each on Monday and Wednesday nights.
The A’s, who are off Thursday, can only hope that the sterile indoor environment of Tropicana Field somehow reverses their fortunes. They finish this road trip with three games over the weekend against the Tampa Bay Rays.
Starting pitching report:
Eric Surkamp, recalled Wednesday morning to take the hill in this one, became the latest A’s starter to struggle mightily. He lasted just 2 2/3 innings and gave up four runs, the fourth game in a row in which Oakland’s starter didn’t last as long as four innings. As has often happened on this road trip, the A’s gave their starting pitcher an early cushion. But given a 1-0 lead in the top of the second, Surkamp allowed Bradley Jr.’s three-run homer in the bottom half, and the Red Sox were up 3-1. Surkamp was gone by the third.
A’s manager Bob Melvin brought the hook quickly with Surkamp (0-3), surely hoping to keep this one from getting out of hand early. But as the A’s rotation has suffered an extended meltdown, the bullpen is beginning to show big-time vulnerability too as it takes on more and more of a workload. With the A’s trailing 4-3, Ryan Dull allowed Dustin Pedroia’s two-run shot in the fourth to make it 6-3. And things would only get uglier from there. Dull has allowed nine runs over his past 10 games. Marc Rzepczynski was charged with three runs without getting an out, and Zach Neal made his big league debut and allowed three runs over three innings.
At the plate:
You can’t find much blame with the A’s offense, which has fought valiantly to give the team early leads in many games lately. Khris Davis had a two-run double to highlight things at the plate.
In the field:
The A’s didn’t commit an error. Draw whatever encouragement you can out of that.
The A’s head to Tampa Bay to finish this nine-game road trip with three against the Rays starting Friday. Rich Hill (4-3, 2.39) takes the ball against Jake Odorizzi (0-1, 3.10) in the 4:10 p.m. opener. Saturday’s 3:10 p.m. game pits Kendall Graveman (1-4, 5.74) vs. Matt Andriese (1-0, 1.29). On Sunday, the A’s send out Sonny Gray (3-4, 6.00) and finally see a lefty as the Rays go with Matt Moore (1-3, 4.83). First pitch is 10:10 a.m. All three games will air on CSN California.