A group weblog for Oakland A's fans

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Joe Blanton, A's stopper

It was great to watch the A's kick off a crucial four-game series at Fenway Park with a win. The top of the order jumped all over Curt Schilling in the first inning, with an Ellis single, Kendall double, and Kotsay single plating two runs in the first five pitches. Then Blanton came in and shut down the Red Sox offense for 6 1/3 innings, a feat for which he deserves some sort of medal. The Red Sox are nearly unstoppable, especially at home, where they average a tidy 6.2 runs per game and hit .285/.366/.466 as a team. That's a higher average, OBP and OPS than any individual A's hitter other than Mark Ellis and Dan Johnson.

Speaking of Ellis, we definitely owe him some plaudits as he continues his red-hot second half. Ellis's OPS by month:

April .651
May .725
June .807
July .855
August .934
September 1.033

He's been by far the most consistent hitter on the team, and since being moved into the leadoff spot, he's hit a tidy .467/.516/.667. Now that is getting the job done. With the Angels still playing tonight (and currently losing), the A's might be back in a tie for first place. The road ahead is difficult, but after a game like tonight's you can't help but feel good about A's playoff chances.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?