Here come the A’s
There’s two things you can always count on every July: Humidity in New York and the A’s getting hot.
In the past five years, the A’s have lost Jason Giambi, Johnny Damon, Miguel Tejada, Jason Isringhausen, Keith Foulke, Tim Hudson and Mark Mulder via trades and free agency. Yet — like a certain jam band from the Bay Area — they keep on truckin’.
Barry Zito looked great in Oakland’s 3-0 win over the Angels. The A’s, a Major League-best 32-13 since May 29, took two of three from the Angels to climb within 6 1/2 games of first place. That is a lot of games to overcome, but the A’s have done it before. Both teams have tough, four-game series coming up this weekend: the Angels host the surging Yankees, while the A’s visit the Rangers in Arlington.
Speaking of the Yankees: Giam-Tino combined for four of New York’s six homers in the series-clinching win over the Rangers. And Aaron Small comes out of no where to get the win. Where are they finding these guys?
Oh wait, newsflash: Kerry Wood is hurt.
Wood left the Cubs’ game Wednesday night against the Red after the third inning. He faced just 15 batters and threw 66 pitches before team physicians pulled him because of stiffness in his throwing shoulder.
How long before this guy becomes a closer?
As for a former closer, John Smoltz won his seventh straight on Wednesday. Frickin’ Braves. Every time you think they are out, they jump back in. They are just half a game behind the Nationals in the NL East.
Line of the night
"The Marlins pitching staff is working on a nifty 13-hitter," — Diamondbacks announcer Mark Grace.