Athletics 3, Rangers 2

Coco Crisp practiced making spectacular catches in the outfield

even when an injured hand kept him out of the lineup. The real

thing just seemed routine.

Crisp had two hits, drove in a run, stole a base and robbed

Bengie Molina of extra bases in helping the Oakland Athletics beat

the first-place Texas Rangers 3-2 on Sunday.

”It’s tough playing the Rangers,” said Crisp, a career .292

hitter against them. ”We just jumped on the back of our pitcher

and tried to contribute. We’re chasing Texas so we can’t get too

far ahead of ourselves.”

As for his fourth-inning grab high up the wall in center


”I was positioned well,” Crisp said. ”When I first looked up

it didn’t look like it was going that far. It caught a second wind

but I had enough time to know where the fence was.”

Kurt Suzuki hit a tiebreaking sacrifice fly in the seventh

inning, Trevor Cahill allowed six hits through eight and the A’s

won for the eighth time in their last 10 home games. Rajai Davis

also drove in a run.

Cahill (12-4) won his fifth straight against the Rangers despite

allowing two unearned runs in the sixth. He struck out three and

did not walk a batter.

”I had been walking a lot of guys my past few starts so I was

trying to throw strikes and let them hit it,” Cahill said. ”No

free passes.”

Darren Oliver (0-1) started the seventh, and gave up a single to

Chad Pennington and an RBI double to Crisp before leaving the


Texas starter Colby Lewis failed to win his 10th game for a

fourth consecutive start, although the Rangers were leading when he

was replaced. He gave up a run on three hits over six innings,

walking three and striking out seven.

”He never did have a 1-2-3 inning,” Rangers manager Ron

Washington said. ”He had to keep making pitches, which he did. We

put up two runs against Cahill and took the lead into the seventh

inning. It just didn’t work out.”

Michael Wuertz pitched the ninth for his fifth save in as many

chances. He walked Molina and Cristian Guzman around a strikeout

and then got pinch hitter Vladimir Guerrero to ground into a

game-ending double play.

”It’s not the situation you want to be in,” Wuertz said.

”With Vlad on the bench you know he’ll probably get a turn at bat.

Walking two guys just makes it harder. I made a pretty good pitch

and luckily we got the double play.”

Cahill had his career-long scoreless streak end at 23 innings,

including 13 against the Rangers, when Josh Hamilton singled home a

run in the sixth. Cahill improved his AL-leading day ERA to 1.33 in

seven starts.

”He just continues to go out there and keeps doing everything

right,” Wuertz said.

Lewis took a shutout into the sixth. Kevin Kouzmanoff opened the

frame with a double, moved to third on Mark Ellis’ groundout and

scored on Davis’ sacrifice fly.

”It seemed like they had runners in scoring position every

inning,” Lewis said. ”I threw too many pitches, allowed too many

baserunners to go deep in the game.”

The Rangers scored a pair of unearned runs in the sixth to take

the early lead. Elvis Andrus was safe on a fielding error by Chad

Pennington and scored on Hamilton’s sharp single.

Hamilton reached third on the play when Suzuki threw the ball

into center field and scored on Nelson Cruz’s sacrifice fly.

Notes: Ellis doubled in the second inning, ending a streak of 15

games without an extra base. … A’s OF Matt Watson was sent to a

local hospital for tests after complaining of pain in his side and

back. … Molina played in the Bay Area for the first time since

the Giants traded him on July 1. … A’s 1B Daric Barton left the

game in the fifth inning with spasms in his left shoulder muscles.

… Cahill and Lewis have matched up four times this year, with the

A’s winning each time.