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Athletics' Pat Neshek pitches well after suffering personal loss

Neshek spent two days at home grieving with his wife before rejoining the team at her behest.

Steven Bisig-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

Relief pitcher Pat Neshek pitched in the seventh inning of the Oakland Athletics' Game 1 loss to the Detroit Tigers on Saturday, retiring both batters he faced.

But his mind was elsewhere.

As reported by CSN Bay Area's Casey Pratt, Neshek pitched with a heavy heart after losing his first-born son, who died in his mother's arms two days prior.

Neshek wore the initials "GJN" on his sleeve on Saturday in memory of Gehrig John Neshek. Anyone on the team or around it would have understood if Neshek decided not to play, but his wife Stephanee urged him to do so.

"I was thinking about him the whole time," Neshek said.

In support of their teammate, the rest of the A's wore a black patch with white letters in memory of young Gehrig.

"I broke down the second I heard it," Neshek said of his team's gesture. "I thought that was really, really, special."

The A's face the Tigers in Game 2 of their American League Division Series on Sunday in Detroit.