Why Bassitt blames himself for A's ALDS loss to Astros


The final A’s game of 2020 was almost seven weeks ago.

And yet, Chris Bassitt still hasn’t moved on from how the season ended, with the A's losing the American League Division Series to Houston in four games.

“I have a lot of regrets over my last game that I pitched,” Bassitt, who pitched the series opener, recently told NBC Sports California. “I think I set the stage to lose the series by the way I did pitch.”

In his final outing of the playoffs, Bassitt allowed three earned runs and nine hits in four innings. 

“It wasn’t so much about the results, more of a mindset for the game that I had of trying to get cute during that game,” Bassitt said.

The righty says “getting cute” wasn’t something he did all season long, but felt that going into that final matchup against Houston, a concern was that they had already seen him too many times. Reflecting on it now, he felt the need to do “something different.”

“I went away from what I usually did and obviously they made me pay for it,” Bassitt said. “I take a lot of blame personally on the way the series turned out.”

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Bassitt’s ownership is appreciated, but in reality, the amount of home runs hit between Oakland and Houston bordered on laughable. It’s less than reasonable to put the responsibility on any one player. Four games saw a combined 24 dingers at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.

“There’s no hiding that you don’t want to pitch at Dodger Stadium during the day,” Bassitt said.

He had previously chatted with former teammates and current Dodgers Blake Treinen and Max Muncy. Their scouting report proved to be too accurate.

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“As a pitcher, knowing the ball flies, the worst thing you can do is try and get cute with it,” Bassitt said. “I think I fell into that trap, and other pitchers did as well.”

Bassitt was unquestionably Oakland’s top starter in 2020, finishing eighth in AL Cy Young voting. He’s entering a second year of arbitration with the A’s, and is primed for a big 2021 season.