PROGRAMMING NOTE: NBC Sports California is looking back at the A's 50 Memorable Moments since the franchise relocated to Oakland in 1968. Below are the next two moments you can vote on. Tune into A's Pregame Live tonight at 6pm to watch highlights of the two moments. After the A's and Angels conclude, tune into A's Postgame Live to see which moment will move on to the next round!
1. Dallas Braden's Perfect Game on Mother's Day 2010 (10-time winner -- Defeated Yoenis Cespedes' incredible on-the-fly throw to nail Howie Kendrick at home in 2014)
(From Dallas Braden)
Well, they haven't taken it away yet so I guess it might not be a dream after all. It's still insane to think that on such a special day for so many people, my teammates and I were able to etch ourselves into the hearts of A's fans everywhere.
In the moment, I had no clue. At the same time, I was fully aware. Completely focused and emotionally distracted at the same time. Hell, I talked myself into the wrong count in the last at-bat of the game. The 27th out. In that moment I had no clue. No clue I'd become the vehicle for such an emotional moment shared between mothers and their families across baseball that special day. I do believe that's what I was -- merely a vehicle to connect people through our beautiful game. My mom, along with the baseball gods, and Landon Powell, I guess, all steered us down the path of history and to be able to share and relive those special moments and memories is a blessing a young little leaguer can only dream of.
I hope that through my passion for the game you feel the same love I, myself, my wife, baby girl, and grandmother have felt from each of you, the fans of the Green & Gold. We couldn't be happier to share this Mother's Day and every Mother's Day from here on out, TOGETHER! It's a perfect fit if you ask me.
2. The Big Three's sweep of the D'backs in Arizona in 2001
(From Ben Ross)
To this day, the Oakland Athletics' "Big Three" remains one of the most dominant starting pitching trios in MLB history. And from July 6-8, 2001, Mark Mulder, Tim Hudson, and Barry Zito showed why, allowing a total of two runs in a three-game sweep of the first-place Arizona Diamondbacks.
On July 6, Mulder opened the series by pitching a one-hit shutout, striking out nine, as the A's blanked the D-backs 3-0. Hudson followed with a complete game of his own on July 7, allowing just one run and striking out 6, as Oakland won 5-1. Zito completed the sweep on July 8, outdueling Curt Schilling in a 2-1 victory. Zito allowed one run in six innings and struck out 10.
Mulder finished the season 21-8 with a 3.45 ERA and finished second in the AL Cy Young voting behind Roger Clemens. Hudson went 18-9 with a 3.37 ERA. Zito was 17-8 with a 3.49 ERA. The A's won 64 of their last 82 games that season to finish 102-60. Arizona went on to win the World Series, defeating the New York Yankees in seven games.