Anderson on top of his game in helping A’s avoid elimination

Ezra Shaw/Getty ImagesA’s lefty Brett Anderson threw six scoreless innings.

Ezra Shaw/Getty ImagesA’s lefty Brett Anderson threw six scoreless innings.

These A’s never count themselves out — down and doubted is their dogma.

Brett Anderson outdueled fellow postseason first-timer Anibal Sanchez and the upstart A’s were stellar on defense all over the diamond, avoiding another playoff sweep by Detroit by beating the Tigers 2-0 Tuesday in their AL Division Series at the Oakland Coliseum.

The A’s cut their deficit in the best-of-five matchup to 2-1.

Coco Crisp, whose misplay dearly cost Oakland in Game 2, saved a likely home run by Prince Fielder with a leaping catch at the top of the center-field wall in the second — and the A’s will play another day in this improbable season full of remarkable rallies.

“You see him hit it and you just kind of put your head down a little bit because you think you just gave up a homer,” Anderson said. “Then you see him plow through there and catch the ball and it kind of kick starts you to go out there and make pitches.”

Yoenis Cespedes hit an RBI single in the first inning and Seth Smith homered later.

That was plenty on a night Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera, Fielder and the Tigers’ high-priced offense were shut down by the low-budget A’s. Tigers 16-game winner Max Scherzer will try to close out the series in Game 4 tonight against A’s rookie A.J. Griffin.

Fielder was the biggest victim of Oakland’s spot-on defense, robbed three times. First by Crisp, Oakland’s most experienced player whose Game 2 blunder on Cabrera’s fly allowed two runs to score in a 5-4 loss Sunday in Detroit.

Crisp let out a big “Whoo!” after raising his arm to signal he’d made the grab. A’s shortstop Stephen Drew made a tough play running to his left to stop Fielder’s grounder in the fourth and then threw to first while still off balance and in motion.

Then, in the seventh, Cespedes cut over to make a diving catch on Fielder’s liner to left field.</p>

That delighted the yellow towel-waving sellout crowd of 37,090 in this blue-collar city.

“It’s frustrating. But it’s a good team you’re playing,” Fielder said. “They’re going to make those plays, that’s why they’re here.”

After Cabrera singled with one out in the ninth, Fielder grounded into a game-ending double play.

The A’s own the lowest payroll in baseball at $59.5 million. Fielder is getting big money in Motown: $214 million over nine years.

Anderson, back on the mound for the first time since straining a muscle in his right side Sept. 19 at Detroit, worked quickly and showed no signs of a layoff or jitters in his first postseason start.

That’s just not the way the A’s have operated this year.

Last week, Oakland entered its final three-game series of the regular season needing to sweep the two-time reigning AL champion Texas Rangers to capture the AL West — and the A’s did it.

A club with a majors-best 14 walkoff wins and countless whipped-cream pie celebrations snapped the longest postseason skid in franchise history at six games.

A'sCoco CrispMLBOaklandOakland A's & MLB

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

San Francisco Police Officer Nicholas Buckley, pictured here in 2014, is now working out of Bayview Station. <ins>(Department of Police Accountability records)</ins>
SF police return officer to patrol despite false testimony

A San Francisco police officer accused of fabricating a reason for arresting… Continue reading

Riordan Crusaders versus St. Ignatius Wildcats at JB Murphy Field on the St. Ignatius Prepatory High School Campus on September 14, 2019 in San Francisco, California. (Chris Victorio | Special to the S.F. Examiner)
State allows high school sports to resume, but fight is far from over

For the first time since mid-March 2020, there is hope for high… Continue reading

A nurse draws up a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at the Mission neighborhood COVID-19 vaccine site on Monday, Feb. 1, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SF expands vaccine eligiblity, but appointments ‘limited’

San Francisco expanded eligibility for COVID-19 vaccinations Wednesday but appointments remain limited… Continue reading

The now-shuttered Cliff House restaurant overlooks Ocean Beach people at Ocean Beach on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. (Sebastian Miño-Bucheli / Special to the S.F. Examiner)
History buffs working to keep Cliff House collection in public view

Funds needed to buy up historic building’s contents at auction

Perceived supply and demand in the Bay Area’s expensive rental market can play a big part in determining what people pay. (Shutterstock)
Bay Area rental market is rebounding — but why?

Hearing about people leaving town can have as big an effect as actual economic factors

Most Read