OAKLAND -- We've all heard of the proverbial game that ain't over till it's over? Well, this was the game that was over almost before it began.
Three-run homers in each of the first two innings by the Oakland Athletics sealed the New York Yankees' fate early Sunday, and despite coming home with a winning record (5-4) on this grueling three-city road trip, the Bombers leave Oakland on a sour note after a 10-5 trouncing at O.co Coliseum. Bad pitching, mostly feeble hitting, mortifying mental mistakes, this one had it all. Time to go home.
Road kill: Nuno had been a different pitcher on the road (2-0, 1.80) than at home (0-3, 5.55), but not today. Nuno lasted just three innings, plus two batters in the fourth, both of whom he left on base for Jose Ramirez to clean up. Ramirez didn't get the job done, promptly walking Coco Crisp to load the bases, hitting Craig Gentry in the head with a 1-2 changeup to force in a run, and then allowing a two-run single to Yoenis Cespedes. Nuno's final line: 3 IP, 8H, 8ER.
Bombs away: The A's had three runs before Nuno had two outs when Derek Norris absolutely pulverized a 3-1 fastball with two men on. It was the first HR Nuno had allowed in a road game all season; he has allowed 10 in seven starts at Yankee Stadium. An inning later, it was Crisp's turn to smack a three-run shot to make it 6-0 before Nuno had gotten five outs.
Ring the Bel-Tran: On Saturday, Carlos Beltran said he "didn't feel good" at the plate, but on Sunday, he had two hits, including a solo HR, his first since April 22, in the seventh inning. Unfortunately for the Yankees, it hardly made a dent in the A's 10-1 lead at the time.
Bright spots: After the horse left the barn, both Shawn Kelley and Adam Warren did a nice job of bolting the door. In his third appearance since coming off the DL, Kelley threw a 1-2-3 fifth, and Warren, who hadn't worked in five days, allowed a hit, a walk and struck out four in two innings.
Abandon ship! Just when you thought it couldn't get any more embarrassing, Beltran apparently lost count of the outs in the top of the eighth, peeling off toward the Yankees' dugout after shortstop Jed Lowrie's diving stop resulted in a forceout of McCann at second. Turns out there were only two outs, and Beltran became the third out as part of a bizarre double play when it was ruled he had abandoned first base.
It gets worse: The inning after Beltran's brain freeze, Brendan Ryan, who replaced Jeter at shortstop, committed a two-base throwing error, and John Ryan Murphy, who came in to catch in the seventh, committed his third passed ball in two games, allowing a Matt Thornton fastball to sail past his glove.
Gardy Party: Brett Gardner delayed the inevitable by hitting Jim Johnson's two-out, 3-2 pitch over the right-field fence with a runner aboard in the ninth to account for the Yankees' last two runs. It was Gardner's fifth homer of the year. Johnson then walked Ryan and gave up a single to Alfonso Soriano, further delaying the inevitable since it forced Bob Melvin to go to his bullpen for the final out. Murphy finally obliged by striking out.
What's next: Cross-country flight home, followed by a day off on Monday and then a string of nine straight home games against AL East opponents, starting with Tuesday night's game with the division-leading Toronto Blue Jays.
Here are the probables: Masahiro Tanaka (10-1, 2.02) vs. RHP Marcus Stroman (3-1, 5.18) on Tuesday; Chase Whitley (2-0, 2.41) vs. LHP Mark Buehrle (10-3, 2.28) on Wednesday and David Phelps (2-4, 4.32) vs. RHP Drew Hutchinson (5-4, 3.62) on Thursday, all games at 7:05 p.m.