It was another explosive offensive night for the A’s on Monday, as they beat the Topeka Golden Giants 14-6. The win moved the A’s to within 0.5 games of the Golden Giants for first place.
The A’s took an early 1-0 lead in the first inning, after Josh White hit a leadoff double, and was later driven in by catcher Garrett McKinzie on a groundout to short stop.
Bryan Dudley had a solid outing on the mound, striking out two, walking none, and allowing just five hits. Dudley was helped in the early innings by the A’s defense, who took away several hits from the Golden Giants.
Topeka took their first lead of the game in the third inning, thanks to a few errors by the A’s defense.
It began with a bunt single that Dudley couldn’t corral on the infield. A stolen base and throwing error put the leadoff runner on third base before any outs were recorded.
A single would drive in the run, and another throwing error put the runner at second base with still no outs. A double and a single would score two more runs before the inning was over.
The A’s recovered though, regaining the lead with four runs in the bottom half of the third inning. Josh Garcia hit a leadoff single, and was driven in by White with a double.
Matt Fultz drove in White and Travis Stroup on a two out single to left field. A single and a walk later, Brett Bearden drove in Fultz with a single and the A’s had a 5-3 lead.
Two more in the fourth put them up 7-3, and a five run fifth inning put the game away for good.
After Jacob Boylan grounded one through the hole for a single, Bearden was hit by a pitch, and Garcia advanced them with a bunt.
Stroup drove in Boylan and Bearden with a single, White joined him on base with a single, and Fultz drove the two in with another single. McKinzie would be the fifth runner to cross the plate on a wild throw.
Topeka tried to mount a comeback in the top of the seventh, but was only able to score three runs on two doubles in the inning.
Tanner Rosenthal, Brett Bearden and Nick Brandecker each pitched one inning to close out the game for the A’s. Brandecker found himself in a bases loaded situation in the ninth, but escaped it with a strikeout and a double play.
With the win, the A’s are now 0.5 GB the Golden Giants for first place, and play them again tonight at 7. Admission to the game is $3.