OAKLAND — Coco Crisp found a way to end a night’s worth of offensive frustration for his team.
He delivered a walk-off single that scored Ryan Healy in the bottom of the 13th, and the A’s beat the Tampa Bay Rays 1-0 in the longest game this season for Oakland.
It was the first game in the majors this season to remain scoreless entering the 13th, and it marked just the 10th game in Oakland history to remain scoreless as deep as 11 innings.
A’s rookie Sean Manaea engaged Rays righty Jake Odorizzi in a terrific pitcher’s duel, each man firing eight scoreless innings. It didn’t seem right neither factored into the decision, and their excellent outings began fading from memory with each scoreless inning that ticked away. So dominant was the pitching that the teams completed the 13 innings in a relatively reasonable 3 hours, 31 minutes.
Healy led the inning off with a double against Dylan Floro and with one out, Crisp lined a 3-1 pitch into left-center for the game winner. Healy, the A’s high-energy rookie third baseman, crossed home plate and continued circling all the way toward first base in celebration.
With all the uncertainty regarding the A’s as the trade deadline approaches, watching Manaea continue to blossom is one thing fans can look forward to. The lefty turned in the best effort of his career in his previous start, a seven-inning scoreless effort at Houston on July 10. He topped that Friday, striking out seven and walking none over eight innings. And like that 2-1 loss at Minute Maid Park that led into the All-Star break, the A’s struggled to provide Manaea any offense.
The A’s advanced only two runners as far as third base through the first 12 innings, but they found a way to claim their second walk-off victory of this homestand.
Starting pitching report
After being thrust into Sunday’s game unexpectedly for five innings of relief work, Manaea was back in starting mode Friday night. He was in control all night, mixing in his fastball, slider and changeup to keep the Rays off-balance. He didn’t allow a base runner until Corey Dickerson’s clean single to right with two outs in the fifth. The biggest threat off him came in his final innings. Kevin Kiermaier singled and advanced to third with two outs, but Manaea retired Brandon Guyer on a fly to right to end that threat and keep it a scoreless game. Over his last two starting outings, the rookie has thrown 15 scoreless innings. And perhaps most impressive, over his last three outings overall, Manaea hasn’t issued a single walk (20 IP).
Ryan Madson entered for the ninth and issued a four-pitch leadoff walk to Evan Longoria. But he then coaxed a 6-4-3 double play from Steve Pearce and struck out Steven Souza, Jr., looking to keep it 0-0 going to the bottom half. Ryan Dull and John Axford covered the final four innings.
At the plate
A’s manager Bob Melvin shuffled up the top of his batting order, but the changes didn’t do much good throughout the marathon game. While Manaea was busy dealing, Odorizzi was mowing through the A’s lineup with equal ease. A hot name on the trade rumor mill, Odorizzi matched Manaea by throwing eight scoreless innings of five-hit ball without a walk.
In the field
Center fielder Jake Smolinski made a running catch in the top of the eighth of Logan Forsythe’s liner, a big play that limited Kevin Kiermaier to merely tagging up and advancing to third, where he stayed. Manaea also got help from fellow rookie Ryon Healy, who made a sliding catch of a foul pop near the A’s dugout in the second. Healy is showing himself to be an aggressive defender. He ranged far to his left to cut off a grounder in the seventh and threw to second for an inning-ending force play.
A crowd of 15,250 was on hand.
Kendall Graveman (6-6, 4.25) tries to keep his good times rolling as he looks to extend a career-high five-game winning streak. He’ll match up against lefty Drew Smyly (2-11, 5.64) in Saturday’s 6:05 p.m. game, which is followed by fireworks.