The Oakland Athletics got their nine game homestand off to a solid start as they rode a dominant pitching performance from Gio Gonzalez to a 1-0 victory over the Florida Marlins. The A’s offense struggled to get much going but it was more than enough as Gio Gonzalez gave up one hit and three walks while striking out nine over eight innings.
Emilio Bonafacio led off the game with a single and that was the last hit for the Marlins. The Marlins got no more than one runner on base in the remaining innings and simply had no answer for Gonzalez who was dealing all night long. He came out after eight innings due to a pitch count of 106 and Andrew Bailey slammed the door for the victory. In the ninth inning, Bonafacio reached base on a throwing error by Scott Sizemore and advanced to second on the bad throw. However, Bailey proceeded to strike out Omar Infante, Greg Dobbs and Hanley Ramirez to secure his sixth save of the season.
The A’s were only able to score one run, but it was enough to secure a victory. Hideki Matsui doubled to lead off the second inning, advanced to second on Conor Jackson’s infield single, and advanced to third on a Ryan Sweeney groundout to first. Kurt Suzki then hit a fly ball to right field that saw Mike Stanton go into enough of a slide that Matsui was able to tag up and score.
The A’s and Marlins play the second game of their series Wednesday evening. Graham Godfrey is tentatively scheduled to start against Ricky Nolasco on CSN California. However, with Rich Harden returning to the rotation on Friday, Godfrey is expected to head to the bullpen. It sounds like he’ll make the start on Wednesday and then head to the bullpen this weekend.