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Reid Detmers’ debut spoiled by Oakland’s power offense

Angels drop crucial series finale against A’s, as Wild Card deficit drops to seven games

MLB: Oakland Athletics at Los Angeles Angels Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

August 1, 2021 will forever be a day to remember for Angels top pitching prospect Reid Detmers. 417 days after he was drafted 10th overall by the Angles in the 2020 MLB Draft, the Louisville alum delivered a much-anticipated performance marred by a few fastballs left over the middle of the plate.

Unfortunately, he couldn’t help guide the Angels to a win as the fell to Oakland, 8-3.

Detmers’ pitch arsenal was on display early in the game with a fastball, slider (more like a knuckle slider), curveball trio leading to his first career strikeout against All-Star first baseman Matt Olson. He quickly followed up by stranding newly acquired Starling Marte at third courtesy of his second consecutive strikeout. This time, infielder Jed Lowrie was the swinging victim.

Battery mate Max Stassi kindly gave support to the young lefty as he drilled his 10th home run of the season over the wall in right field for the early 2-0 advantage. After the Halos scratched another run across the plate in the bottom of the second, the game quickly took an abrupt u-turn in the third as the Oakland bats welcomed Detmers to the big leagues in the most demoralizing way possible. Olson took revenge with a game-tying three-run home run, then three batters later, newly acquired catcher Yan Gomes rocked a gut-punching two-run blast catapulting Oakland to a 5-3 lead that they would not relinquish.

Detmers got back on track and cruised with a 1-2-3 fourth inning, before getting the hook from Manager Joe Maddon with one out in the fifth after two batters reached base. The book officially closed on Detmers following an RBI Single by Gomes (yielded by reliever Austin Warren) that drove in Lowrie, adding to the A’s lead, 6-3.

Even though the bats were clicking early, the Halos lineup turned ice cold and reverted back to the status quo of struggling against Oakland pitching. From the third inning on, the combination of Daulton Jefferies, Yusmeiro Petit, Jake Diekman, Andrew Chafin and Sergio Romo for the A’s limited the Angels to only three hits over their final 24 at-bats, including one walk as well. This was the first home series for the Angels since 2011 against the Boston Red Sox where they manufactured five or less runs in a four-game series.

With a 8-3 Oakland victory, the Angels not only dropped the four-game series, but also fall 3-4 on the homestand. They will look to rebound on the road beginning tomorrow at Globe Life Field for the first of four versus division rival Texas Rangers.

Sunday notables

  • Reid Detmers’ final stat line: 4.1 IP | 6 H | 6 ER | 2 BB | 2 K | 2 HR (82 Pitches - 55 Strikes)
  • Detmers fastball lived between 92-94 MPH, while his curveball floated in to keep A’s batters unbalanced. Signs of dynamic control were evident, however time will be the best medicine for the lefty. During his run in the minors, “Polished” was a term used most within the Angels organization. Detmers has the stuff to compete at the Major League level, but battling and adjusting what you have to offer against big league hitters will help develop and strengthen the caliber pitcher he can become moving forward. For Angels fans, it will be hard to hear, but patience for the young starter is only natural.
  • Junior Guerra looked solid in relief for the Angels, as he threw three scoreless innings with three strikeouts.
  • Max Stassi hit his 10th homer of the season and now has an OPS of .940