Tuesday, October 8, 2013

OPINION: CONTROVERSIAL HOMERUN Affected Game Several Ways , Why Colon Should Start, New A's Store

Slow Motion video of controversial homerun only sure takeaway is that there was fan interference @LBSports http://larrybrownsports.com/baseball/fan-interference-victor-martinez-home-run-video/206621  We believe fan interference should have been called, per Baseball rule book, especially since there was no conclusive evidence whether or not 1) the ball could have been caught or not by Reddick and 2) whether the ball would definitely hit above the yellow homerun line Fan interference helps give Victor Martinez home run (Video)  

At first we didn't make much   over 'the homerun.'  I thought it could've gone either way but after thinking about it , it did have a significant role in the game, affecting Oakland negatively on several counts.

The fact it was a controversial homerun made it worse then if it were a clean home run because it changed the momentum of the game and made the As quickly regroup and try to put the pieces back together after being fairly comfortable in the driver seat .  One could say the the As missed their chances but had the homerun been caught one doesn't know how things would have played out differently. It was a bitter blow - and probably an unfair one -  to the A's in a close game.

Ideally, manager Melvin and the team would have regrouped with the game still in hand.   But, things don't happen that easily in a situation like this. It quickly puts more pressure on the team and forces some  quick decision changes   as to  which pitchers and  pinch hitters to use.

The homerun,  by the way,  may have appeared on the replay to be well above Reddick's glove to when the fans interfered ,however , it was still coming down -  almost straight down- and Reddick feels 'one hundred percent' he would've caught it  -and he's caught many like that before

Ideally, yes, the A's would have regrouped and stepped back a moment with two men on in scoring position and no outs; it's not like them to have two guys in a row strike out with runners in scoring position. They're usually good at battling and getting the bat on the ball, at least,  in tough situations like with Vogt the other night battling Verlander some 10 pitches . But this night it all happened so quickly after the shock of the homerun; there was little time to think about the next step and Reddick and Vogt went up rather shell-shocked, although, the previous two batters were able to get on base.

Melvin's Judgment Could Have Been Affected by Homerun, Too, re. Other Issues

That aside from the homerun controversy there were some issues in the game which we can look at. There were probably a couple decisions that may   be questioned regarding  Melvin strategies in the game, but, again, those are things he might not of done if he was not put under duress due to the 'shocking' homer .

The biggest question mark  was bringing in Brent Anderson rather then Jerry Blevins or another true reliever.

Melvin says he likes to bring in his set relievers but in this case it was after his main relievers were used up    so you could've brought anyone and we would've gone with the righty- lefty strategy which has some science to it,at least. If your remaining bull pen pitchers are of similar caliber than just figure if more righties or left handed batters were coming up next and use the one of opposite (ie lefty picther if more righty batters or vice versa).

Finally Melvin should've strongly considered using Guiaspo(sp)   rather than Reddick in right field. Reddick has been struggling and Guiaspo is more likely to hit the ball - and all we needed was a fly or slow infield hit with no outs in the seventh to score that run, yet Reddick and then Vogt, under additional pressue from the homerun call, not to mention facing the tuff Shirzer, both struck out .It's all hindsight but there is some science to which players are more likely to NOT strike out

 But we must look ahead to game five we have at least even chance of winning the game  playing our home park. Perhaps the biggest question now is whether to start for Bartolo Colon or Sunny Gray. I would say to go ahead and stick with Colon,  who has been 'the man' all season, with consistency. Just because he had a hickup in the first inning of the first playoff game, just make sure he gets a lot of warm up pitches and   have Sunny Gray available and ready to come in at any time. Plus, there's no assurance Sunny Gray could repeat his shutout performance of Game Two, again; Colon has the track record that Gray doesn't have.  So,  it's like you have two chances that way. Theres no tomorrow  in this first playoff series if the A's lose and you don't have to worry so much about the upcoming starter as there will be several day break before the next series would begin.

 OPINION: CONTROVERSIAL HOMERUN Affected Game Several Ways , Why Colon Should Start, New A's Store

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