The streaking A's rallied for seven runs in the last two innings to beat the Tigers, 10-7. The win maintains their 2-game lead on Seattle and Anaheim (who rallied for 5 in the ninth to beat Derek Lowe and the Red Sox, 8-3) and extended their winning steark to 12 games. Eric Chavez had a big game going 3-for-5 and 3 RBI and Jermaine Dye was 2-for-4 with 2 RBI and 3 runes scored. The biggest hero of the night may have been John Mabry, who pinch-hit for Mark Ellis with men at second and third with one out and the A'd trailing 7-6. He doubled to right-center scoring both runners and putting the A's ahead to stay.
Mabry was acquired by the A's from the Phillies in the Jeremy Giambi trade as part of the A's mass purge May 22. He was seen as a journeyman throw-in the deal by most (he's 31 and plays first, left, and right, and used to be a third baseman and probably could be enlisted as one in a pinch), but has proven a key player in the A's resurgence. Since the trade:
- His batting average is nearly 40 points higher than his career average (.313 to .274). In fact his next highest average was .307 (the only time he hit .300 for a season) in 1995, his rookie year, with the Cards.
- His on-base average is 20+ points above his career average (.348 to .326). The last time his OBP was this high was 1997 (.352).
- His slugging average is 164 points above his career average (.571 to .407). His pervious slugging high was .431 in 1996 and his slugging average had declined steadily since 1999 from .401 to .286 in his almost two months with Philly this year. In fact, in Oakland he has nearly doubled his slugging average from before the strike.
- His OPS would rank eighth in the AL if he qualified, before Nomar Garciaparra, teammates Eric Chavez and Miguel Tejada, MVP hopefuls Alfonso Soriano and Torii Hunter, and last year's MVP Ichiro Suzuki, to name a few.
Here are his totals for Oakland this year with a projection out to 162 games:
Season TM G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB CS AVG OBP SLG OPS
2002 Oak 65 147 20 46 12 1 8 33 8 26 1 1 .313 .348 .571 .919
162 games Oak 162 366 50 115 30 2 20 82 20 65 2 2 .313 .348 .571 .919
First you'll notice that even projected out to 162 games his at bat totals are still low, indicating that he has only been a semi-regular since the trade (he pinch-hits & fills in late in games). But his totals still pretty impressive for a player from which not much was expected. The 20 HRs would top his major-league high of 13 in 1997 and his professional high of 16 in 1993 (for the Arkansas Travelers of the Texas League). His 80 RBI would top his career professional high of 74 in 1997.
Repeat after me: "Destiny. Destiny. No escaping as for me." Everything is firing right for this team even when they make a seemingly lopsided trade like the Mabry-Giambi one.