The Royals had their eight-game winning streak snapped, as Joe Coleman held them to five hits in the Athletics’ 7-1 win on Monday night at the Oakland Coliseum.
Coleman only struck out one and walked two, but the Royals couldn’t get anything going. Double plays in the first and second turned those innings around. Freddie Patek started the third with a single and stole second, but was stranded there after two grounders and a popup.
The Royals’ lone run came in the fourth. With one out, Coleman hit Al Cowens with a pitch. Pete LaCock singled, and the Royals had runners at first and third. But Clint Hurdle grounded into a forceout; although the run scored, the inning was certainly less promising, and it ended with a Darrell Porter fly ball.
Royals starter Jim Colborn somehow pitched a complete game despite being tagged for 10 hits. He struck out seven and walked three. Oakland scored first, as Jim Tyrone doubled to lead off the second. Tony Armas singled with two outs to put the A’s in front.
After the Royals tied it in the fourth, Oakland took the lead right back in the bottom of the inning. Mike Jorgensen led off with a home run. The A’s then took control of the game with two runs in the fifth. With one out, Jeff Newman singled and reached second on a wild pitch. Rodney Scott drove him in with a double. Colborn tried a pickoff play at second but threw the ball into centerfield, so Scott moved up to third. Mitchell Page singled to drive him in and the A’s had a 4-1 lead.
Oakland added a run in the seventh when Scott walked and stole second and Rob Picciolo doubled. The A’s capped the scoring with Newman’s two-run home run in the eighth.
With the loss, the Royals dropped to 99-56. They still had a 10-game lead in the AL West.
Box score and play-by-play:
1977 news: A 73-year-old man, Robert Chambliss, was indicted in Birmingham, Alabama, on four counts of murder for his role in the 1963 bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham. Chambliss, a member of the Ku Klux Klan, was accused of planting sticks of dynamite under the front steps of the church. The massive explosion killed four young black girls and injured 20 more people. Sadly, the FBI had investigated, then closed the case without charging anyone. It took until 1971 for the investigation to be reopened, at the request of Alabama attorney general William Baxley, and Chambliss was the first person to be charged in the case. He would ultimately be found guilty of one count of murder and died in prison in 1985. The bombing helped galvanize broad support for the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Two more men would be convicted of murder in the case, one in 2001 and one in 2002.