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Oakland at Anaheim

Scoreboard
Oakland (61-72) «1500000006141
L.A. Angels (80-52)000410000590

Athletics 6, Angels 5

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ANAHEIM, Calif. -- The downtrodden Oakland Athletics finally won a series for the first time in over a month, and they did it against the team that's running away with the AL West.

Emil Brown had a home run and three RBI, Rajai Davis had a career-high four hits and the Athletics beat the Los Angeles Angels 6-5 on Wednesday night.

"If you're not winning any series, you're losing a good amount of games. So the goal going into every series is to try to win it," shortstop Bobby Crosby said. "And to come in here and take a series from one of the best teams in baseball is a good confidence booster for us."

The A's took two of three and snapped a drought of 12 winless series going back to July 7-10, when they captured three of four from Seattle.

The A's still trail Los Angeles by 19½ games, however.

"Anytime you're playing the Angels, it's a rivalry and it's a lot of fun. But it's not fun when it doesn't mean as much as it could," Oakland left fielder Jack Cust said. "We started off really well and just kind of hit the wall for the second year in a row. It's definitely disappointing. We just want to finish up strong and have something positive to take into next year."

The Angels haven't won any of their past five series since sweeping the Yankees at home. They have a 15-game lead on the Texas Rangers, who will come to Anaheim on Thursday night to begin a four-game set.

Huston Street (4-5) retired all five batters he faced after coming on in the sixth and striking out Mike Napoli with two men on.

Rookie Brad Ziegler, who replaced Street as the Athletics' closer, got five outs for his sixth save. The sidearming right-hander ended it by getting Juan Rivera to ground into a double play with runners at first and second after walking Robb Quinlan.

"I just try to get as many ground balls as I can," Ziegler said. "I felt like it wouldn't hurt by putting Quinlan on first because it set up a double play. I mean, obviously I didn't want to walk him. I was trying to go after him and just left pitches out of the zone, but it worked out."

Staked to a 6-0 lead through two innings in his in his fifth big league start, Oakland left-hander Gio Gonzalez failed to retire a batter in the fourth as the Angels made a game of it with a four-run rally.

Gonzalez, who escaped a one-out bases-loaded jam in the second after walking three batters, hit Quinlan with a pitch that loaded them again in the fourth with no outs. Erick Aybar chased Gonzalez with a two-run single, Quinlan scored on a fielder's choice grounder by Gary Matthews Jr., and Mark Teixeira's RBI single against Alan Embree made it 6-4.

Angels second baseman Howie Kendrick came out after feeling tightness in his left hamstring advancing to second on Teixeira's hit. Sean Rodriguez replaced him and struck out with two runners in scoring position in the fifth, after Aybar's RBI single trimmed Oakland's lead to 6-5.

"Being down 6-0 definitely is tough," said manager Mike Scioscia, whose team hasn't won a game in which they've trailed by more than four runs. "We battled to get back in that ballgame, but Oakland's got some guys in the back of their pen that are throwing the ball well and they got it done. We just had a little bit too far to come back from."

All-Star Joe Saunders (14-7) had his second rough outing in a row, throwing 49 pitches over 1 1/3 innings and allowing six runs on eight hits.

Davis opened the game by beating out a single to Kendrick after his one-hopper to the right side of the mound deflected off Saunders' bare hand. Scioscia and trainer Ned Bergert went out to check on him and decided to let Saunders stay in after a couple of warmup pitches.

"It was just a reaction by Joe," Scioscia said. "Fortunately, it just kind of glanced off his finger and didn't catch it flush. It could have been ugly."

Scioscia and Saunders both insisted that had nothing to do with what transpired from there. Davis stole second and scored on Brown's single before the A's blew it open with a five-run second inning. Eric Patterson singled home a run, Crosby added a two-run double and Brown chased Saunders with a two-run homer to left-center, his 13th.

Saunders, who gave up six runs over 5 1/3 innings last Friday in a 9-0 loss to Minnesota, is 5-3 with a 4.72 ERA in nine starts this season when pitching on four days of rest -- and 7-4 with a 3.49 ERA in 12 starts on five days of rest.

"What affected me was not being able to throw strikes and get ahead of guys," said Saunders, who beat the A's 2-0 with eight innings of four-hit ball on April 29 in Anaheim. "I've just been struggling lately."

Notes

Scioscia was ejected by plate umpire Paul Schreiber while making a pitching change in the seventh inning after Darren Oliver issued a leadoff walk to Frank Thomas. ... Angels 3B and leadoff hitter Chone Figgins did not play because of irritation in his left big toe.

 
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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Players of the Game
Oakland

E. Brown
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 3
Anaheim

E. Aybar
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 3
 
Oakland Athletics
Rajai Davis, CF5240000 .250
Bobby Crosby, SS4112102 .247
Emil Brown, RF-LF5123013 .249
Frank Thomas, DH3030100 .235
    Mark Ellis, PR-DH0000000 .234
   a- Jack Hannahan, PH-DH1000010 .223
Kurt Suzuki, C4000113 .283
Jack Cust, LF3000124 .228
    Carlos Gonzalez, RF0000000 .240
Daric Barton, 1B4120001 .216
Cliff Pennington, 3B4000012 .154
Eric Patterson, 2B4121012 .221
Totals37614647  
a-struck out for Ellis in the 9th
Batting
2B - Bobby Crosby (34, Saunders)
HR - Emil Brown (13, Saunders)
RBI - Bobby Crosby 2 (55), Emil Brown 3 (58), Eric Patterson (11)
SB - Rajai Davis 2 (23, 2nd base off Saunders/Napoli, 2nd base off Arredondo/Napoli), Daric Barton (1, 2nd base off Saunders/Napoli), Eric Patterson (8, 2nd base off Oliver/Napoli)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Patterson-Crosby-Barton
E - Bobby Crosby (15, Throwing)
Oakland Athletics
Gio Gonzalez 3344540 7.25
Alan Embree 1.1111210 4.83
Santiago Casilla (H,8) 0.2200010 3.38
Jerry Blevins (H,3) 0.2200010 3.16
Huston Street (H,2; W,4-5) 1.2000030 4.21
Brad Ziegler (S,6) 1.2100100 0.39
HBP - Quinlan (by Gio Gonzalez)
Pitches-Strikes - Gio Gonzalez 81-42, Alan Embree 21-11, Santiago Casilla 12-7, Jerry Blevins 17-11, Huston Street 21-16, Brad Ziegler 23-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Gio Gonzalez 2-3, Alan Embree 1-2, Santiago Casilla 1-0, Brad Ziegler 5-0
Batters Faced - Gio Gonzalez 18, Alan Embree 7, Santiago Casilla 4, Jerry Blevins 4, Huston Street 5, Brad Ziegler 7
Los Angeles Angels
Gary Matthews Jr., LF4000113 .228
Howie Kendrick, 2B3001010 .308
    Sean Rodriguez, PR-2B^SS2000012 .160
Mark Teixeira, 1B4031100 .303
Vladimir Guerrero, RF5020004 .289
Torii Hunter, CF4000136 .274
Garret Anderson, DH5110003 .283
Mike Napoli, C1200312 .222
   a- Reggie Willits, PH0000000 .185
Robb Quinlan, 3B2110210 .271
Erick Aybar, SS4123023 .277
    Juan Rivera, 2B1000001 .236
Totals35595810  
a-hit a sacrifice bunt for Napoli in the 9th
Batting
2B - Mark Teixeira (31, G. Gonzalez), Vladimir Guerrero (23, Ziegler)
3B - Garret Anderson (3, G. Gonzalez)
SH - Reggie Willits (5)
RBI - Howie Kendrick (37), Mark Teixeira (100), Erick Aybar 3 (36)
SB - Sean Rodriguez (2, 3rd base off Embree/Suzuki)
Team LOB - 13
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Vladimir Guerrero 1
DP - Aybar-Kendrick-Teixeira, Loux-Teixeira, S. Rodriguez-Aybar-Teixeira
Los Angeles Angels
Joe Saunders (L,14-7) 1.1866111 3.67
Shane Loux 3300110 2.31
Darren Oliver 1.2200200 2.73
Jose Arredondo 2100030 1.18
Justin Speier 1000020 5.07
Pitches-Strikes - Joe Saunders 49-29, Shane Loux 41-22, Darren Oliver 30-19, Jose Arredondo 20-13, Justin Speier 13-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joe Saunders 1-1, Shane Loux 4-2, Darren Oliver 2-2
Batters Faced - Joe Saunders 12, Shane Loux 11, Darren Oliver 8, Jose Arredondo 7, Justin Speier 3
Game Information
Attendance - 38587
Game Time - 3:33
Temperature - 76
Umpires - Home - Paul Schrieber, First Base - Kerwin Danley, Second Base - Wally Bell, Third Base - Laz Diaz