The A's played a baseball game today. At long last! It feels so good, even though the A's lost to the Cubs, 8-7.
Mark Ellis hit a grand slam, and Bobby Kielty went three-for-three, including a left-handed home run. Several pitchers threw well: Joe Kennedy, Chad Gaudin, Kirk Saarloos and Huston Street.
Dan Haren and Jay Witasick got knocked around a bit, and Ron Flores took the loss. Flores isn't really to blame, though, as he was hurt by some shaky defense by Cliff Pennington and Daric Barton. The word around camp was that Barton's defense had improved, but judging by today's performance, where he failed to catch a couple of throws, and then was indecisive on the game-winning play (he hesitated on whether to try to get the out at the plate, or try for a 3-6-3 double play, and got neither), he still has quite a bit of work to do. But it's early, and he still has several weeks ahead of Ron Washington in his ear, I'm sure.
About the A's--none. Haren was bad, but I saw him get knocked around in spring training last year too, and he turned out fine.
About the Cubs--Carlos Zambrano is (still) one heckuva pitcher. Brian Corey, whom the A's scored all seven runs off of, is not.
Box Score. (Note: it was Kielty, not Clark, who was 3-for-3. The box score is wrong.)