Daniel Mengden walks back to the mound after giving up a two run home run to the Milwaukee Brewers’ Scooter Gennett in the fifth inning of a Wednesday’s game at the Coliseum. (Ben Margot/AP)

A’s struggle on offense, defense in loss to Brew Crew

OAKLAND — After grounding into a fielder’s choice to end the sixth inning, Danny Valencia crossed first base and spiked his helmet with such force that the thud could be heard from the press box above the second deck.

The moment of frustration epitomized not just the day, but also the season for the light-hitting Oakland Athletics.

“Sometimes the psychology [of it] comes into play when you’re struggling offensively,” said manager Bob Melvin after his club fell 4-2 to the Milwaukee Brewers on a breezy Wednesday afternoon at the Coliseum. “It happens as a group.”

In the getaway-day defeat, the A’s, who have scored the least in the American League, only put two runs on the board against 31-year-old journeyman Junior Guerra and a pair of Brewers relievers.

The first run came courtesy of Coco Crisp, who deposited a 92-mph fastball from Guerra into the seats beyond the wall in right field in the bottom of the fourth. Max Muncy drove in the second, lining an RBI single to right two innings later.

“He looks as confident at the big league level as I’ve seen before,” Melvin said of the 25-year-old who is making a bid to retain his roster spot with the return of regular right fielder Josh Reddick looming next week. “This is the best we’ve seen him and he’s really wanting to take advantage of this opportunity.”

Along with the quiet bats, the team’s suspect defense spoiled Daniel Mengden’s strong showing — his third in as many starts.

“He knows we think he’s good. And he is. He thinks he’s good too. He might not tell you that,” Melvin added with a laugh. “But he knows he’s good.”

The 23-year-old rookie allowed three runs on seven hits in six innings of work. He also punched out nine Brewers. Not that he was counting.

“You know it’s not my job to strike them out. It’s my job to get them out,” Mengden said. “So, if I get the strikeout, good. If not, hopefully I get them out on the ground.”

All three of Mengden’s runs came in the fifth — a frame that also featured a throwing error from Crisp. The miscue from the veteran left fielder was the team’s 10th in nine games and the 50th of 2016, which means Oakland once again paces the AL in that dubious distinction.Bob MelvinCoco CrispDaniel MengdenDanny Valenciagennettjunior guerrakarl buscheckkirk nieuwenhuismartin maldonadoMilwaukee BrewersMLBOakland A'sOakland Athleticsscooter

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

Retired officers seek end to decade-old age discrimination case

Retired officer Juanita Stockwell was 60 when she and her colleagues first… Continue reading

SFMTA Board passes ‘clean’ sales tax ballot measure to fund Caltrain

After a weeks-long impasse, tri-county leadership appears to have reached a compromise

Struggling Chinatown restaurants get help moving business outdoors

A total of $25,000 will be distributed to assist with costs of Shared Spaces program

Nomination delays, vacancies impair SFMTA board’s ability to vote

Supervisors to consider mayor’s nominees on Aug. 10

District 7 race leads supervisor contests in campaign contributions

The race to replace outgoing Board of Supervisors President Norman Yee has… Continue reading

Most Read