Tampa Bay Rays topple A’s
OAKLAND — A confidence boost from the starting rotation felt pertinent following the announcement that Frankie Montas, the A’s ace, would be suspended for 80 games for testing positive for PED use.
Granted, Montas’ shoes were large to fill — Tanner Anderson, in his third start with the A’s this year, left a little too much space for comfort, taking his second loss in the Tampa Bay Rays’ 5-3 win on Friday night.
Anderson’s sinker started him off strong, but the Rays had him decoded the second time through the order. They made enough hard contact to tack three runs on him in his four innings of work. Anderson collected four strikeouts and one walk.
Wei-Chung Wang allowed the Rays a cushion; Willy Adames turned on an inside fastball that sailed into the left field bleachers. Matt Olson and Ramon Laureano both knocked their 12th home runs of the year to get the A’s on the board.
The A’s took one more attempt at a comeback just like Thursday night, courtesy of the Matts, Chapman and Olson. Both were generating scorching exit velocities on the night; Chapman’s double to the center field wall and Olson’s RBI double down the first base line put the A’s down just one run with no outs.
But Khris Davis grounded out, Laureano struck out looking at a questionable fastball a touch outside the zone and Jurickson Profar’s grounder up the middle found a glove to kill the potential rally.
The A’s moved to 40-37 and play the Rays again today.