Josh Reddick is enough of a pro that he can hit his personal reset button at a moment's notice.
And that's good, because a moment is all a hitter generally has in the batter's box.
Upset with his approach during an eighth-inning at-bat with the A's down by a run, Reddick channeled Happy Gilmore, then crushed a two-run home run that rallied the A's to a 4-3 victory over the Astros, Oakland's 10th consecutive win over Houston this season.
"I hate to go all Happy Gilmore," Reddick said in reference to the 1996 Adam Sandler movie, "but I had to find my happy place."
Reddick described it as a mind-cleansing where "you have to out-dumb yourself" to get back in the aggressive "I'm better than this" mode that a slumping hitter needs to break through.
Matched up against reliever Wesley Wright, brought in to get the left-hander-vs.-left-hander advantage in a close game, Reddick fouled the first pitch off, took three balls, then fouled off a pitch he felt he should have handled better.
It was time for some mind games. It was just a couple of seconds, but it was time well spent. Reddick hit Wright's next pitch into the right-field seats, and the A's were in front for the first time in one of the club's bleakest defensive games of the season.
The A's committed three errors, misplayed another ball and allowed the Astros to steal three bases. Most of that took place in the first three innings, when Houston jumped to a 3-0 lead on Tommy Milone, starting for the first time since July 10.
Manager Bob Melvin didn't try to mask the stench, telling his troops midgame "this was some kind of ugly for five innings."