For those still questioning whether or not Josh Donaldson was unfairly snubbed from the All-Star Game, he provided the answer with his bat on Sunday afternoon.
Donaldson’s walk-off single with two outs in the 11th inning sent the Oakland Athletics to the break on a celebratory note, taking two games out of three from the Boston Red Sox at the O.co Coliseum with a 3-2 victory in the matinee.
The A’s rallied in the the 11th against Matt Thornton. With Chris Young standing on second and Derek Norris on first, Donaldson blooped the second pitch he saw into right field, scoring Young to win the ballgame.
That almost never happened, as Ryan Cook escaped a bases-loaded jam in the top half of the inning Cook walked two batters and hit one, but struck out Brock Holt to preserve the tie.
Red Sox starter Brandon Workman pitched like a poised veteran in his MLB debut, flirting with a no-hitter.
John Jaso was the A’s only baserunner until the seventh, drawing a walk with one out in the fourth inning. However, Workman was able to thwart any threat via a ”strike ’em out, throw ’em out” double play, with Josh Donaldson striking out.
The no-hitter was broken up in the bottom of the seventh, when Coco Crisp led off the inning with an infield single, beating out a desperation dive and throw by Dustin Pedroia.
With the A’s down 2-0, the shutout would soon be broken up as well, as Donaldson smacked a two-run homer to left center field, tying the game on one swing of the bat.
Oakland ace Bartolo Colon was solid, going 6.1 innings and allowing two runs on eight hits with no walks and four strikeouts.
His first blemish came in the sixth, when he gave up back-to-back singles to Jacoby Ellsbury and Daniel Nava with one out. Then, the dangerous Pedroia stepped up, and he lined base hit to left field that gave the Red Sox a 1-0 lead.
Colon ran into more trouble in the seventh. Mike Carp led off the inning with a double, and he would cross the plate on a single by Holt.
With a record of 56-39, the A’s sit atop the AL West by two games over the Texas Rangers, as they rest and recuperate in preparation for the stretch run of the 2013 season.