The best record in Major League Baseball belongs to the Athletics. So does the longest winning streak.
Jesse Chavez allowed just three hits over seven scoreless innings and Coco Crisp hit a walkoff RBI single in the bottom of the 10th as Oakland defeated the visiting Red Sox 2-1 on Saturday afternoon at O.co Coliseum. It was the fifth victory in a row for the A’s, who are now 47-28 on the season with a shiny +136 run differential. The next-closest run differential in the big leagues belongs to the Giants at +46.
Chavez, who had started just four games before this season, owns a fantastic 2.71 ERA and 1.18 WHIP in 93 innings (15 starts). The 30-year-old right-hander opened the 2014 campaign with a 5.48 career ERA in 234 2/3 innings (mostly relief).
Ichiro Suzuki is now a Mariners employee and, as such, he’s not allowed to sit in the dugout during a game. That’s for coaches and players only.
He knows that, too. Indeed, on the day Ichiro announced his sorta-retirement, he talked about how it was going to be hard not to be down on the field with the other players. He even made a ridiculous joke about how, “[he] can’t say for certain that maybe [he] won’t put on a beard and glasses and be like Bobby Valentine and be in the dugout.”
In related news, this mysterious stranger was seen by an Associated Press photographer in the Mariners dugout during the first couple of innings of the M’s-Yankees game:
No beard, but I guess that joke was not very ridiculous after all. Either way, by the end of the second inning — poof — he was gone.
Obviously, when something interesting like this happens you mustache an expert for their opinion on the matter. To that end, the Associated Press reached Bobby Valentine, who famously did the same thing after an ejection way back in 1999, for comment:
“He was perfect. I never would have known it was him.”
Valentine was suspended for two games and fined $5,000. I’m assuming Ichiro won’t get hit quite as hard given that he wasn’t defying an umpire’s authority, but even if he does have to pay a fine, he’ll likely do so willingly.