Athletics

A's lose third straight after Mariners snatch away chances

Athletics
Kyle Lewis makes great catch

Off the bat, both Ramón Laureano and Sean Murphy thought they had hits in the fifth and eighth innings, respectively, on Tuesday night.

Seattle Mariners outfielders had other ideas, as Kyle Lewis and Mitch Haniger made game-changing catches that ultimately would lead to the Athletics' 4-3 loss at the Coliseum.

The A's remain in first place in the AL West, but they've lost three straight games, including the first two games of the series to the rebuilding Mariners.

Lewis had Laureano shaded towards right-center, so when the A's centerfielder crushed a ball to just left of straightaway center, the reigning AL Rookie of the Year got on his horse and made a spectacular running catch to save extra bases. If he misses it, Laureano has an easy double and possibly a triple.

Three innings later, the A's had the tying run on base when Murphy hit one to deep right-center. Haniger race towards the wall and made a leaping catch on the warning track to end the inning. If that drops, Matt Olson would have scored to tie the game.

"That's the difference in the game," manager Bob Melvin told reporters after the game. "When you have one-run games like that, it's a small margin for error and either one of those balls, certainly Murphy's ball, that gets down and it's a whole different ballgame. You've got to give them credit. They made some really good plays and sometimes that decides the game for you."

 

Jed Lowrie, who drove in the A's first run of the game with a double in the second inning, was impressed with Haniger's play.

"Those are big plays in big spots," Lowrie told reporters. "Those are run-saving plays, particularly Murphy's spot. So that ties the game, I think in the eighth there, if Mitch doesn't make that great play in right-center field. So that's why I say, sometimes you've gotta tip your cap. It's a young, talented team and they play well."

The A's had their chances Tuesday night, but the Mariners snatched those opportunities away with a pair of incredible plays.

Both of the A's losses to the Mariners this week have had Lewis' handwriting all over them, and if he impacts Wednesday's game in the same way, Seattle might just leave Oakland with a stunning three-game sweep.