Athletics 5, Red Sox 0
That talented, young pitching rotation the Athletics are banking
on to carry them this season is holding down its end of the deal so
Brett Anderson struck out eight and outdueled usual Oakland
nemesis John Lackey for his first victory of the season, and the
A’s beat Boston 5-0 on Tuesday night to snap the Red Sox’s
three-game winning streak.
David DeJesus got Oakland on the board with a first-inning RBI
groundout, then Hideki Matsui added a two-run double and Daric
Barton and Kurt Suzuki each hit RBI singles in a four-run eighth.
Anderson (1-1) allowed four hits and walked one in eight innings,
helping the A’s (9-8) move over .500 for first time this year.
A’s starters have allowed just one earned run over their last
five games – spanning 33 2-3 innings – for a 0.27 ERA.
”It’s fun when we’re going good like that,” Anderson said.
”We want to feed off each other and keep putting up zeros.”
The Red Sox were coming off a 9-1 win over the Blue Jays,
highlighted by 13 hits and three home runs. Boston remains winless
away from Fenway Park – the 0-7 road start is the worst in
franchise history – and was blanked for the second time this season
after losing 1-0 at Cleveland on April 7.
”We’ll be all right,” second baseman Dustin Pedroia said. ”We
might be the first team to lose our first seven on the road and win
the next seven, who knows.”
Red Sox manager Terry Francona was ejected for the first time
this year for arguing a play on the basepaths in the fourth.
Anderson looked sharp all night and improved to 4-1 with a 2.08
ERA in six career starts against the Red Sox. The starters are on a
”Every one of them has a solid routine between starts and they
are ready to pitch,” manager Bob Geren said.
Boston had a chance against Anderson in the eighth after David
Ortiz led off with a single and was lifted for pinch-runner Jacoby
Ellsbury. But Mike Cameron struck out and Ellsbury was caught
stealing for a double play. Initially, interference was called on
Cameron but crew chief Tim Welke cleared things up afterward. Even
Ellsbury thought the call was batter interference.
Anderson then allowed back-to-back singles to Carl Crawford and
Jarrod Saltalamacchia before striking out Darnell McDonald.
Craig Breslow and Brian Fuentes combined to finish the
In the seventh, Anderson tripped on the front of the mound and
committed Oakland’s majors-leading 19th error while making a throw
to first after fielding Adrian Gonzalez’s comebacker. But Anderson
got Kevin Youkilis to ground into an inning-ending double play.
After Gonzalez’s two-out single in the first, Anderson didn’t
allow another hit until Ortiz’s single. The burly left-hander
retired 16 of 17 batters during one stretch with only a leadoff
walk to Pedroia in the fourth.
Pedroia was caught stealing moments later and Francona was
ejected by plate umpire Jim Reynolds for arguing. Francona claimed
it was an obvious balk.
Lackey (1-2) allowed four hits in six innings, struck out three
and walked one in his best start so far. The right-hander threw two
side sessions under the guidance of first-year Red Sox pitching
coach Curt Young during a long layoff between starts. He was
supposed to pitch last Wednesday but the game against Tampa Bay was
rained out and he had his turn skipped.
”Never been skipped before. It was not fun,” Lackey said.
”Just trying to locate the fastball better. It was something I
didn’t do well the first two starts. I thought I did well tonight.
You’ve got to get out there and throw bullets.”
Lackey – 17-6 with a 2.86 ERA against the A’s in 32 career
starts, most of those coming during his days with the AL West rival
Angels – lowered his ERA from 15.58 ERA to 9.82 after struggling
through his first two outings of 2011.
”Watching him pitch tonight, you can’t really see how he
struggled early in the year,” Geren said. ”That was vintage John
But Boston couldn’t generate much offense in the opener of a
quick, two-game visit to the Coliseum – one of only two West Coast
trips for the Red Sox this season. They came to Oakland twice in
2010 and also played in San Francisco for interleague. The A’s go
to Fenway Park for a pair of three-game series.
After this stop, the Red Sox head to Southern California to play
four games with the Los Angeles Angels before three games at
Baltimore. They don’t come back West until August at Seattle.
Francona stuck with the hot hand of shortstop Jed Lowrie, who
entered batting .516 with two home runs and nine RBIs. Lowrie went
0 for 4 with two strikeouts and had his seven-game hitting streak
snapped. Francona said he is communicating with Marco Scutaro and
is writing the lineup based on performance.
NOTES: Francona was ejected for the 30th time as a manager. …
A’s LHP Dallas Braden, placed on the 15-day disabled list Monday
with a shoulder injury that forced him out of his Saturday start
early, is scheduled to be examined by renowned orthopedist Dr.
Lewis Yocum on Wednesday in Los Angeles. RHP Tyson Ross will start
in Braden’s spot Friday at Seattle. … Oakland RHP reliever
Michael Wuertz (strained left hamstring) is set to pitch in a rehab
outing for Triple-A Sacramento at Reno on Wednesday – going four or
five outs. … Young returned to Oakland for the first time since
spending the past seven seasons coaching the A’s pitchers.