Blown Jobs - Joe Kennedy Edition
First up: Joe Kennedy.
Blown Save Number: 1
Oakland at Texas
Joe Blanton got off to a rocky start at Texas, giving up three runs in the first two innings. He struggled his way through four more innings, but managed not to allow another run. He can thank Jay Payton and his spectacular, backwards-diving, wall-clashing catch for that.
Our A's managed to climb back into the game, scoring two runs in the fifth and two runs in the sixth. Our 4-3 lead was anything but secure heading into the bottom of the sixth. That's when Ken Macha turned to Joe Kennedy as the first man out of the 'pen. Joe effing Kennedy. In the span of four batters, the lead was gone.
Luckily, the Rangers only scored one and we added on to secure the win.
Oakland - 6, Texas - 4
Counting on Joe Kennedy to protect a one-run lead in Arlington?
That was stupid.
So who takes the blame for Joe Kennedy's first blown save as an Athletic?
Up next: Jay Witasick
Blown Save Number: 2
Kansas City at Oakland
A pitcher's duel finds our A's and Kansas City's Royals tied at zero heading into the bottom of the sixth inning. Joe Blanton finally got some run support, as Crosby, Johnson and Payton knocked in a run each.
The 3-0 lead held up until the eighth inning, when Macha handed the ball over to Jay Witasick. The first three batters he faces promptly reach base and his day is done.
Enter Joe Kennedy. Matt Stairs drives an 0-2 pitch for a double and the 3-0 lead is cut to 3-2. The next batter he faces is Emil Brown and our A's trade a run (and the lead) for an out when he grounds out to the shortstop. T-Long (aka Goggles Paisano) hits next and pops up a sacrifice fly to centerfield. Kansas City takes the lead and Kennedy's done.
Huston Street replaces Kennedy too little too late and retires Angel Berroa to end the inning. But the damage has already been done.
Our A's battle back to tie the game in the bottom of the eighth, but fail to score again. Duchscherer, Calero and Rincon all pitch in the extra frames. I wonder why none of them pitched in the eighth? Oh, that's right...'cause Ken Macha is a damn fool.
Kansas City - 5, Oakland - 4
Handing the ball over to Jay Witasick and Joe Kennedy in an eighth inning save situation when Duchscherer, Calero and Rincon were all available?
That was stupid.
Two blown saves for Kennedy and Macha's responsible for both. And one of those led to a loss. Which brings me to my latest feature.