Ocheltree's Blast Helps A's Triumph Over Bourne in 13
by Brian Clark
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Shut out for the prior twenty-seven innings, it looked as if the A's would lose their fourth in a row Monday night in Bourne. That scenario became more realistic when All-Star reliever Eric Pettis arrived to pitch the ninth with the Braves leading 4-0. Pettis had allowed just two runs all summer heading into the appearance. Grant Green walked with one out, Yan Gomes was hit by a pitch, and Victor Sanchez doubled down the left field line, scoring Green. Gomes then scored on a Kyle Bellows groundout. Chatham was down by two runs and down to its final out as Evan Ocheltree stepped to the plate.
The Wake Forest leftfielder had already made a highlight-reel catch in the bottom of the seventh, and provided more dramatics when he hit the 1-2 pitch from Pettis over the wall in left center, tying hte game at two.
Matt Harvey was the story for the A's as the game moved into extras. The North Carolina righthander kept the Braves off the board as he worked three innings. He would be in line for the win as the A's exploded in the thirteenth. Joe Mercurio was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. Corey Overholtzer pinch ran, and moved to second on a wild pitch. That allowed him to score as third baseman Ross Wilson misplayed a Grant Green bouncer, giving Chatham its first lead of the night. A walk two batters later to Victor Sanchez loaded the bases, and Kyle Bellows put the game out of reach with a towering grand slam, his second home run of the season.
Bourne tried to start a rally of its own, as they put the first two batters on base off of Matt Harvey before Carmine Giardina was summoned from the bullpen. He induced a 1-6-3 double play from Jordan Henry, and got Pierre LePage to ground to first, ending the ballgame, and completing a thrilling Chatham comeback.
The A's now stand at 16-19 with the win, in third place in the Eastern Division. They return to Veterans Field tonight against the Orleans Cardinals, who can clinch a playoff berth with a win. Justin Marks takes the mound for Chatham at 7, with live coverage beginning at 6:40 with the A's Extra Pregame Show on chathamas.com