Chris Bassett survived a scary line drive to win his seventh straight decision, Matt Olson twice and the Oakland Athletics driven the Kansas City Royals to a 6–3 victory.
Oakland, Calif. — There’s a joke at Oakland’s Slugging Mats about how one usually heats up when the other isn’t.
Lately, the two have been running the ball – and they scored three home runs on Sunday.
Matt Olson homed twice and Matt Chapman also joined, Chris Bassitt survived a scary line drive to win his seventh straight decision, and the Oakland Athletics beat the Kansas City Royals 6–3.
Olsson hit a single shot in the third and fifth for his second two-homer game this season and the 10th game of his career. Chapman made it back to back in bassit (7-2).
“We actually joke about it so well that when one kills the other one never does,” Olson said. “It’s nice to have some games where we’re both doing stuff. We honestly don’t put weight into that but sometimes it feels like it. It’s definitely good to sync a little bit.”
Elvis Andrus added an RBI double in the second and Mark Canha later hit a single against Chris Bubic (1-2) scoring a run-off two at batsmen.
Bassit was terrified in second when a screaming liner from Niki Lopez caught sight of him from behind for an RBI single. The pitcher, visibly shaken, went down in the grass with his arms outstretched for several moments as athletic trainer Nick Papresta and manager Bob Melvin yelled to check on him, but Bassit remained in play.
“It hit me in the perfect spot. It might sound weird,” Bassit said. “It didn’t affect me at all.”
A hit by Lopez loaded the bases, but Bassit regrouped and called on Whit Merrifield for a third strike to avoid further damage.
Bassit allowed two earned runs on five hits with five strikes, three walks – one intentional – and two hits by batsmen in 5 2/3 innings. He has been unbeaten since losing his opening two matches on April 1 and 6.
“I’m not here to win a Cy Young, I’m not here to be an All-Star, I’m here to win a World Series,” Bassit said.
When the A’s finally got a day devoid of wind during a particularly foggy June stretch for the Bay Area, Chapman’s home run ball left the bat at 103.1 mph and traveled 384 feet. Then Olsson cleared the fence twice.
Bubic had five more strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings, giving him 27 runs in 30 innings as a starter.
Carlos Santana placed seventh for Kansas City, missing a hit on time with runners still on base.
Manager Mike Matheny said, “It’s just one of them that kind of hits the big signal to us.” “We had some grown-ups come but no one.”
Lou Trivino, Oakland’s third reliever, finished on his 10th defense and didn’t miss a run in June.
After a four-hit performance on Saturday, Olsson added two more hits, bringing his team-leading home run total to 18 and 7 for 15 in the four-match series.
The A has won 13 of the last 18 meetings with Kansas City, with Thursday a day off to end an extension of 14 games in the coming days.
ROYALS: Kansas City are hopeful that SS Adalberto Mondesi will be back from the injured list after suffering a left hamstring strain at the start of the week when the team returns home.
Athletics: CF Ramon Loreno, working back from a strained right hip that landed him on the IL, will hit JB Wendelken on Monday against live pitching in a mock game – sidelined by a tense left oblique. Then Laureno is scheduled to run the hideout on Tuesday. If all goes well, the minor may not need rehab work. “If we think we’ve got enough at-bats for him from JB and then he runs base well on Tuesday, it might be as easy as activating him on Wednesday,” Melvin said. “A lot of it will revolve around how he feels when he gets his batsmen up against JB” … Leadoff man Kanha returned to the lineup after a day to rest.
LHP Sean Manea (5-2, 3.09 ERA) took the ball for A in his series opener with the Angels on Monday and did not allow a run in his last two innings and 15 innings.
The Royals returned to Kansas City to start a six-game homestand with RHP Brad Keller (6-5, 5.75), making their team’s 14th start.
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