OAKLAND -- The A's averaged a whopping 1.33 runs per game over nine games to close May and open June. They lost all nine of those games.
With a chance to suffer a 10-game losing streak on June 2, the A's put up nine runs and haven't looked back. Since their losing streak, the A's are 10-6 and averaging 5.81 runs per game.
Even after the recent tear, the A's are 26th in MLB in total runs scored with 254 in 68 games (3.73 runs per game).
The question is, who are the real Oakland A's? Seth Smith, who entered Tuesday's win over the Dodgers batting .433 with three home runs over his last 10, thinks he knows. "This is the norm as opposed to the exception," Smith said.
But Smith's claim seemed to contradict the night his team had at the plate. True, they put up three runs in the first inning. But an error by Tony Gwynn Jr. helped, and the A's finished the night 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position.
The A's drew 10 walks Tuesday, but they left 12 runners on base. While the three runs were enough for an on-point Brandon McCarthy, everyone in the clubhouse knows the team has to do better with opportunities that are handed to them.
"That plays on your emotions a little bit when you continue to have guys on base and you can't get 'em in," manager Bob Melvin said. But the patience of being able to make 'em work, get 'em out of the game early and get several guys in the game is good to have as the series goes on. But you'd like to be able to take care of those opportunities. We didn't."
Bartolo Colon is not on the DL...yet. His strained right oblique is like to land him there, though.
"There's reasons we haven't put him on the DL, but there's a good chance he'll go on," Melvin acknowledged. "When, I'm not sure yet."
Jordan Norberto made his first, and potentially only rehab appearance with the Triple-A Sacramento Tuesday night.
He pitched one inning in the River Cats' 5-2 win over the Fresno Grizzlies. He struck out Brock Bond and Francisco Peguero and got Eli Whiteside to fly out to right.
Norberto was placed on the DL retroactive to May 31 with a strained left shoulder. In 21 appearances this season with the A's he is 0-1 with a 3.91 ERA and one save.
Coco Crisp stole three bags in a game for the fifth time in his career Tuesday. The third was his franchise-record 36th consecutive successfully swiped bag.
Stan Javier previously held the A's record with 28.
The American League record for consecutive successful steals is owned by Ichiro Suzuki (45). The MLB record is held by Vince Coleman (50).
Grant Balfour's enters to Metallica blaring from the Coliseum loudspeakers, and the right field bleacher clan loves it. The heavy drums and guitar elicit a unique cheer, and it's tough to tell exactly what's going on amidst the chaos. They are either pantomiming racing Lance Armstrong on one of those hand-powered recumbent bicycles or trying to match Manny Pacquiao punch for punch. Either way, it's a lively scene in right field with Balfour warming up.
Balfour didn't give them reason to keep it up, though, walking the first batter he faced on four pitches.