Ike pitches in, gives A's perfect inning on mound
ANAHEIM -- Amid a 13-run deficit against the Angels on Tuesday night, the A's found respite in the sight of first baseman Ike Davis taking the mound to pitch the eighth inning.
"He volunteered," said A's manager Bob Melvin, following the 14-1 loss. "He was willing to do it, and he was really excited about it."
All he did was induce three quick groundouts, needing just nine pitches to retire Collin Cowgill, C.J. Cron and Chris Iannetta. He topped out at 88 mph.
"I used to throw a little harder," said Davis, who pitched 78 innings at Arizona State. "I was just trying to throw strikes. Had some sink. I threw one four-seamer that cut a lot that almost hit Iannetta, and then I threw one horrible slider to Cowgill."
Yet it was the A's best pitching performance of the night. Starter Drew Pomeranz surrendered five runs in five-plus innings, and R.J. Alvarez was on the hook for seven in just one frame on a night when a thin A's bullpen needed two from him.
"I knew I had a possibility of throwing strikes, and we don't really want to waste another pitcher, especially right now, so I said, 'Yeah, put me out there. I'll try to get some outs,'" said Davis. "It's unique. I always wondered if I was ever going to do it, but at least I know I can throw strikes still."
Davis, the son of former Major League pitcher Ron Davis, said the Dodgers considered drafting him as a pitcher out of ASU, but most other teams essentially told him, "Try hitting first. You can always go back to [pitching]."
It took seven years for it to happen. And he'd do it again, if asked.
"I'll pitch anytime they want me to," Davis said. "They know I can throw strikes. If they ever need me again, I'll volunteer."