A's One-Hit Winners

A's One-Hit Winners

Just call them one-hit wonders. 

If you’re the Oakland A’s, you can get only one hit, and somehow garner three runs and win the game. Really.

The A’s capitalized on two errors from the host Tampa Bay Rays and a solo home run from Brandon Moss to seize their firth consecutive victory and 11th in the last 12 games.

The last time the A’s won with one hit was in Game 4 of the 1974 American League Championship Series against Baltimore on a Reggie Jackson double, reports Jane Lee of MLB.com, who points out that they have never won a regular season game with one hit since the team’s inception in 1913. The last time a team won a game with its only hit being a home run was when the Chicago White Sox beat the St. Louis Cardinals on June 22, 2006.

Moss commented, “It’s not the easiest way to win a baseball game,” A’s manager Bob Melvin added, “One’s all you need.”

The A’s now have the best record in baseball at 30-16. Moss noted, “We’re a very well put together team, and our pitching staff… I mean, I don’t think there’s anyone better.” Oakland’s staff boasts a 2.90 team ERA, second only in the bigs to Atlanta’s 2.83.

Tommy Milone held the Rays scoreless through five innings, but surrendered two runs in the sixth. Four A’s pitchers held the rays scoreless the rest of the way. The key incident came in the eighth, when Fernando Abad induced Yunel Escobar to ground into a double play with the bases loaded to end the inning.

Derek Norris told Jane Lee of MLB.com:

That was huge. That one wins the ballgame in my mind. He came in, not in an easy situation, and DeJesus is not an easy guy to get out. Unfortunately walked him on a close pitch down and away and then got Escobar with a jam-job double play. He’s got a switch. Whenever he gets into a tight situation, he bears down and is all of a sudden throwing 96 with sink, a big hammer curveball and a slider to work off that. Once he gets that adrenaline going, the sky’s the limit for him. He’s unbelievable.

The most famous game with a team winning with one hit may be Sandy Koufax’s perfect game against the Chicago Cubs on September 9, 1965. The Dodgers had only one hit off of the Cubs’ Bob Hendley, which did not figure in the scoring, as the Dodgers won 1-0. It was known in the league that Koufax sometimes telegraphed whether he was throwing a fastball or a curve by a hitch in his delivery, but as Cubs player Billy Williams later said, “We knew what was coming, and we still couldn’t hit it.”