While the Oakland Athletics have fallen off the pace over the
last four weeks, they picked up a much-needed win last time
The A’s try to further distance themselves from the Baltimore
Orioles in the wild-card race as these AL contenders conclude a
three-game series Sunday at Camden Yards.
After dropping Friday’s opener 9-7, Oakland (72-56) bounced back
Saturday with a 2-1 victory. Jarrod Parker threw eight sharp
innings to earn his eighth straight win and Coco Crisp hit a
tiebreaking homer in the ninth as the A’s snapped a three-game
“It’s gratifying that the guys are just able to pick you up,”
said Parker, whose team improved to 9-13 since July 30. “It’s one
of those things where it almost seems like it’s meant to be when it
The Orioles (69-59), meanwhile, had scored 37 runs and hit .351
with runners in scoring position in taking four of five in the
series this year, but they went 0 for 6 in such situations
Saturday. Chris Davis, Adam Jones and Matt Wieters, the team’s Nos.
3-5 hitters, went a combined 0 for 10.
Ryan Flaherty provided the only offense for Baltimore, which
again finds itself three games behind Oakland for the second
wild-card spot having dropped seven of 11.
“In the playoff race, it’s important. Every game is important,”
pitcher Chris Tillman said. “A loss always stinks. They’re never
The Orioles could be in for another long day at the plate
against A’s starter Sonny Gray (1-1, 1.44 ERA), who has impressed
in three starts since being recalled for the second time Aug. 10.
The 23-year-old right-hander has limited opponents to a .135
average and struck out 21 in as many innings during those
Gray allowed two hits over seven innings of two-run ball and was
in line for the win Tuesday before the bullpen collapsed in a 7-4
defeat to Seattle. He retired 13 of the final 14 batters he
“He pitched great again, it’s good to see,” manager Bob Melvin
told MLB’s official website. “He’s got some presence out there, and
certainly has the stuff.”
Gray will get his first look at Davis, who leads the majors with
46 homers. While Davis is 4 for 19 versus Oakland this year, two of
those hits have left the yard.
The Orioles counter with Scott Feldman (3-3, 4.84), who allowed
two runs and five hits in 6 2-3 innings to beat Colorado 7-2 last
Sunday. The right-hander had gone 1-3 with a 7.66 ERA in four
previous home starts since joining the team July 2.
Feldman is 4-6 with a 7.22 ERA in 12 career starts against the
A’s, though this will be his first look at Oakland in 2013. Jed
Lowrie is 3 for 6 with two doubles in their matchups while Alberto
Callaspo is 1 for 15.
Lowrie is 9 for 25 with four doubles and two triples during a
six-game hitting streak. Crisp, 6 for his last 12, has gone deep in
three consecutive games.
Crisp is batting .362 with three homers, eight RBIs and 10 runs
in his last 12 in Baltimore.
Despite Saturday’s loss, the Orioles have taken seven of 11 from
the A’s at home.