Rain soaks chance for road reprieve
Graveman relieved after two innings, A’s lose 2-0 lead
A’s starter Kendall Graveman cruised through two scoreless innings, facing the minimum by throwing just 26 pitches, and held a 2-0 lead.
Then, the rains came. After a one hour and 46 minute weather delay, Graveman was removed from the game in the A’s 5-3 loss to the Phillies.
“Just something I can’t control,“Graveman said of the rain delay. “You don’t want it to happen, but this is the first time in my career this has happened, that I can remember at any time. That’s just kind of how it went tonight.”
Graveman needed to throw a shutout and allow one hit or fewer to one-up fellow starter Daniel Mengden, who went the distance on Friday and surrendered just two singles. The delay washed those hopes away.
“Both teams have to do it, but we lost a little momentum,” manager Bob Melvin said. “We lost our best starting pitcher, so it didn’t work out well for us, but we didn’t play too terribly well after the delay either.”
The A’s jumped out to the 2-0 in the second inning, when Matt Olson slugged his 20th home run on a line drive to right field. The rookie first base- man now has a combined 40 home runs on the season in two levels. Fellow rookie Matt Chapman continued his surge with his league-leading 17th double since the All-Star break, which moved Mark Canha to third with one out. Boog Powell then delivered a sacrifice fly to left.
The momentum swung the Phillies direction after the rain delay in a battle of the bullpens. A trio of Phillies’ rookie relievers, Yacksel Rios, Victor Arno, and Hoby Milner completely silenced the A’s bats. They tossed 3.2 innings of perfect baseball.
The only blemish came from a Bruce Maxwell walk off Milner in the sixth. Edubray Ramos struck out Chapman on a full count to end the inning. The A’s lone hit after the rain delay came when Jed Lowrie homered off Phillies’ closer Hector Neris in the ninth.
“When you don’t see somebody you usually have to acclimate a little bit,” Melvin said of the Phillies young relievers. “But same thing for them, they didn’t really know much about our guys but they had better atbats and played better after the rain delay after we did. “
The Phillies tagged reliever Chris Smith for two runs on four hits in 1.1 innings.
A’s starter Kendall Graveman pitches in the second inning against the Philadelphia Phillies on Saturday. Graveman pitched two scoreless innings before a rain delay.