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Texas (54-51)1000400005102
Oakland (53-51) «24000000x681

A's Ziegler breaks 101-year-old record in win over Rangers

CBSSports.com wire reports
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OAKLAND, Calif. -- Brad Ziegler spent the first two months of the season pitching in the minors. Now the Oakland reliever is making plans to send some of his gear to Cooperstown.

Ziegler set the major league record for scoreless innings to start a career as the Athletics' bullpen threw 4 1/3 shutout innings to bail out starter Dana Eveland in a 6-5 win over the Texas Rangers on Sunday.

Ziegler gave up two singles in two innings to extend his scoreless streak to 27 and break a record that had stood since 1907.

Afterward, the 28-year-old right-hander kept two balls from his outing but planned to send the rest -- along with a pair of his shoes and a hat -- to the Hall of Fame.

"I don't know if that's something I'd ever thought I'd have to do as long as it wasn't a real embarrassing moment or someone else's highlight, but it's pretty incredible," Ziegler said. "It's real special. I feel like I've worked real hard to get here. Thankfully it's not over yet. Hopefully we can keep it going."

Jack Cust and Kurt Suzuki both homered for the A's, who snapped a three-game losing streak and won for the second time in 11 games. Oakland improved to 4-8 against Texas this season and prevented the Rangers from getting their first three-game sweep of the year.

Jeremy Blevins (1-1), the second of four Oakland pitchers, went 1 1/3 innings to earn his first major league win and Huston Street worked a perfect ninth for his 18th save in 23 opportunities.

"It's a very tough lineup as evident of what they've done the whole year, but you've got to give credit to Blevins and Ziegler for what they've been able to do," Street said. "We've got a lot of confidence when those two guys walk out to the mound, even as young as they are. But that's kind of the way this team is. We've got a young team that everybody has high expectations for."

Ziegler's record broke the previous mark of 25 innings set by Philadelphia Phillies right-hander George McQuillan. It's also the third-longest scoreless streak overall by an Oakland reliever.

"He's been tremendous," A's manager Bob Geren said. "The other night when he tied it, it was in a loss and it didn't feel all that great but today is a good one because not only did he set a new major league record but it was in a crucial part of the game against a difficult part of the lineup to get through."

The A's went into the game with the lowest batting average in the American League and second-worst in the majors but roughed up Eric Hurley, who was activated from the 15-day disabled list to make the start. The A's scored six runs to knock the rookie right-hander out of the game after only two innings.

Cust hit his 19th home run off Hurley (1-2) in the first. The A's designated hitter was hitting only .136 since the All-Star break before his two-run drive gave Oakland a 2-1 lead.

Suzuki hit a three-run homer off Hurley in the second.

"He said he was missing his spots so we just have to keep working and see how it goes the next time he gets the baseball," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "Certainly it didn't work out today."

Hank Blalock drove in three runs with a bases-loaded double off Eveland in the fifth. Blalock's hit capped a four-run inning for the Rangers and cut the A's lead to 6-5 while chasing Eveland from the game.

Milton Bradley, who was ejected from Saturday's game after arguing with plate umpire Jerry Meals, added a pair of hits and drove in the Rangers' first run with a double.

But that was about all the offense Texas could muster and the Rangers failed to get a runner to second base in the final four innings.

The game was halted briefly in the fifth when Gerald Laird hit a foul ball that ricocheted off the mask of catcher Suzuki, who stood up and placed his hands on his knees then stayed in that position for several minutes while team trainer Steve Sayles and Geren looked on.

Suzuki remained in the game and finished 3-for-4.

Notes

  • Eveland allowed five runs and eight hits over 4 2/3 innings. The lefty has won only once in his last five starts.
  • To make room for Hurley, the Rangers optioned backup C Max Ramirez to Double-A Frisco.
  • Oakland recalled INF Eric Patterson from Triple-A Sacramento and optioned OF Matt Murton to the minors. Patterson batted leadoff for the A's and went 0-for-3 with a pair of walks and scored a run.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Brad Ziegler starts his career with 27 scoreless innings, two more than George McQuillan in 1907.  (AP)
Brad Ziegler starts his career with 27 scoreless innings, two more than George McQuillan in 1907. (AP)

Players of the Game
Oakland

K. Suzuki
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 1
RBI 3
Texas

H. Blalock
AB 4
R 0
H 2
HR 0
RBI 3
 
Texas Rangers
Ian Kinsler, 2B5120001 .329
Michael Young, SS4210111 .296
Josh Hamilton, CF4000033 .302
Milton Bradley, DH3121010 .312
Marlon Byrd, RF3100102 .249
Hank Blalock, 3B4023020 .273
Gerald Laird, C4030011 .316
Chris Davis, 1B4000014 .290
David Murphy, LF4000001 .269
Totals35510429  
Batting
2B - Milton Bradley (24, Eveland), Hank Blalock (6, Eveland)
RBI - Milton Bradley (58), Hank Blalock 3 (15)
2-OUT RBI - Milton Bradley (21), Hank Blalock 3 (7)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
DP - Young-Kinsler-Davis
PB - Gerald Laird (2)
E - Hank Blalock (4, Misplayed grounder), Michael Young (8, Misplayed grounder)
Texas Rangers
Eric Hurley (L,1-2) 2466212 5.47
Dustin Nippert 4400230 8.56
Jamey Wright 1.2000000 4.45
C.J. Wilson 0.1000010 5.02
Pitches-Strikes - Eric Hurley 50-27, Dustin Nippert 88-52, Jamey Wright 21-13, C.J. Wilson 6-4
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Eric Hurley 2-3, Dustin Nippert 4-6, Jamey Wright 3-2
Batters Faced - Eric Hurley 12, Dustin Nippert 19, Jamey Wright 5, C.J. Wilson 1
Oakland Athletics
Eric Patterson, LF3100211 .220
Kurt Suzuki, C4133000 .294
Ryan Sweeney, RF4110003 .308
Jack Cust, DH3112114 .224
Carlos Gonzalez, CF4010001 .275
Mark Ellis, 2B4000001 .229
Bobby Crosby, SS3100102 .249
Wes Bankston, 1B4000024 .222
Jack Hannahan, 3B4121010 .238
Totals3368645  
Batting
2B - Jack Hannahan (22, Hurley)
HR - Kurt Suzuki (5, Hurley), Jack Cust (19, Hurley)
RBI - Kurt Suzuki 3 (31), Jack Cust 2 (49), Jack Hannahan (36)
2-OUT RBI - Kurt Suzuki 3 (12), Jack Cust 2 (17), Jack Hannahan (14)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Crosby-Ellis-Bankston, Hannahan-Bankston, Ziegler-Crosby-Bankston
E - Bobby Crosby (12, Misplayed grounder)
Oakland Athletics
Dana Eveland 4.2855250 3.88
Jerry Blevins (W,1-1) 1.1000010 0.79
Brad Ziegler (H,8) 2200030 0.00
Huston Street (S,18) 1000000 4.00
HBP - Bradley (by Dana Eveland)
WP - Dana Eveland (5)
Pitches-Strikes - Dana Eveland 78-50, Jerry Blevins 19-11, Brad Ziegler 27-17, Huston Street 8-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dana Eveland 4-4, Jerry Blevins 2-1, Brad Ziegler 2-0
Batters Faced - Dana Eveland 24, Jerry Blevins 4, Brad Ziegler 7, Huston Street 3
Game Information
Attendance - 21135
Game Time - 2:43
Temperature - 61
Umpires - Home - Gary Darling, First Base - Angel Campos, Second Base - Bill Miller, Third Base - Jerry Meals