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Not invincible after all; Astros embarrassed 21-7 by A’s

Back end pitching exposed in blowout

MLB: Oakland Athletics at Houston Astros Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

There were some good things about tonight’s game.

  • The Astros still hold a one-run edge in point differential for the series, leading 22-21 in two games with two games remaining.
  • George Springer’s second home run gave the Astros 250 for the season, a new franchise record.
  • The seat that Yordan Alvarez hit last night in the third deck got painted Orange.
  • The Yankees lost.
  • Martin Maldonado also had two home runs.
  • The A’s only tied their all-time high number of hits in a game, 25.
  • There were four touchdowns scored in the game.
  • Wade Miley was infinitely better tonight than he was in his last outing.


Ok, so he did allow seven earned runs and only got one out. His ERA for the night was 189. Meaning, if he had stayed in the entire game, at that rate the A’s would have scored 189 runs.

Nonetheless, in his previous game last Thursday, Miley gave up 6 runs without getting even one out, an ERA of infinity. By my understanding of mathematics, greatly enhanced today by mhatters article on the Yordan homer, any finite ERA is an infinite improvement over an infinite ERA. Prove me wrong.

But don’t worry, even though Miley failed in his quest to maintain perfection today, another came to claim the mantle of immortality usually reserved for the gods. Joe Biagini faced six batters in the fourth inning, allowed six runs on five hits, a walk, and three homers without getting an out. Joe Biagini achieved infinity. Joe Biagini was perfect.

Cy Sneed, who pitched 2.2 innings between the formally inestimable Miley and the currently limitless Biagini, only allowed a pedestrian four runs, a paltry 13.54 ERA for his game. Whatever happened to reaching for the stars, Cy? If Joe could do it, you could do it. And Chris Devenski, geez. He only allowed two runs in two innings, a thoroughly mortal ERA of only 9.00.

But it gets worse. Framber Valdez, who pitched four innings, actually failed to allow a run in two of them. If it hadn’t been for Framber, the A’s would have scored in every inning, instead of just seven.

Still, it’s damn hard to be perfect, and the pitching staff did a decent job of keeping the bases full with lots of runners crossing home. Every A’s starter got two or three hits, even Robbie Grossman! And every A’s starter had RBI and runs scored too.

When it really mattered, our mound aces were particularly clutch, getting the A’s to smash nine hits out of 16 chances with runners in scoring position. That’s an even higher percentage than the 25 hits out of 51 at bats that our boys were able to give the A’s the rest of the time.

And giving up six home runs was pretty OK too

So even if only Joe Biagini was perfect tonight, the rest of the staff put up a good effort for mere mortals. If they could have just thrown every pitch exactly where the batter expected it like Joe did, the game could still be going on, and we could still be watching.

But perfect games, like Miley pitched last Thursday, and Biagini pitched tonight, games that never end, games that reach infinity, well, those are exceedingly rare.

Twenty-one runs. Still pretty good boys.

In all seriousness, it looks like the Astros are going to have to find a way to win the championship with only three starting pitchers, good as those three are.

Box score and videos HERE