Nate Freiman hit his first big-league homer Monday night, but his thoughts were firmly back home after the bombings in Boston.
Freiman is from Wellesley, the midpoint of the Boston Marathon, and he grew up going to see the runners come through town every year. Often, his family also would attend the Red Sox's Patriots' Day game the same day.
So though he was thrilled to hit a three-run shot in the first inning of the A's 11-2 victory over Houston, Freiman said, "Honestly, it was bittersweet. ... It was an amazing feeling, but I'm not going to forget about what happened in Boston - my family is there. It was a great night for the team, but we're definitely thinking about everyone in Boston."
The A's have several former Red Sox players and, like Freiman, they were focused on developments in Boston.
"This is one of those things no matter where it is, it's senseless," first baseman Brandon Moss said. "And there's no way to stop it. That's the sad reality. An event as charitable as the Boston Marathon, something good that brings so much joy, to take that and cause tragedy and fear - that's sad. It's disgusting."
The A's increased security at the Coliseum, adding 10 Oakland police officers. The teams observed a moment of silence for the victims of the bombings before the game.
Freiman, a Rule-5 draft pick acquired on waivers from, yes, the Astros, had the home run ball safely in his locker after the game. His drive to left also knocked Houston starter Erik Bedard out of the game. Bedard walked four of the first five batters and also gave up two hits: Moss' two-run single and Freiman's homer.