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Detroit at Oakland

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Detroit (43-35)010000000160
Oakland (33-44) «00020201x590

Athletics 5, Tigers 1

CBSSports.com wire reports
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OAKLAND, Calif. -- Jason Giambi and Jack Cust know that if they both start hitting more consistently, it could do a lot for Oakland's chances heading into the second half.

Giambi and Cust broke out of funks with two-run homers, Dallas Braden ended a four-start winless stretch and the Athletics beat the Detroit Tigers 5-1 on Wednesday.

"Hopefully we'll start to get hot," Giambi said. "Hopefully it's coming around. I've been kind of waiting."

So have the A's faithful, accustomed to Giambi's powerful stroke during his first stint with the franchise from 1995-01. He won the AL MVP in 2000 with a career-best 43 home runs, then left for the New York Yankees after the '01 season.

Giambi's drive in the sixth off Justin Verlander (8-4) was home run No. 407, tying him with Duke Snider for 43rd place. The 38-year-old Giambi, who has been dealing with sore legs and entered the game with an American League-low .197 batting average, was in a 2-for-28 stretch before the homer after striking out in his first two at-bats.

Cust struck out in the second -- his 80th of the year -- before connecting with two outs in the fourth for his team-leading 14th homer. That put Oakland ahead 2-1. He had been 4 for 24 with 13 strikeouts in his previous seven games.

"It'd be big, obviously," Cust said of getting improved production from him and Giambi. "The more guys you have going in your lineup the better you're going to be. His average isn't where he wants it to be. My average isn't where I want it to be."

Gerald Laird hit an RBI double in the second for the AL Central-leading Tigers, who had won nine of 12 but were punchless in the series finale.

Braden (6-7) pitched seven strong innings to win for the first time in five starts since beating Baltimore on June 5. He had gone 0-2 during the winless stretch. Brad Ziegler and Andrew Bailey each pitched a scoreless inning of relief.

"I thought we looked a little sluggish and a little tired," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. "We didn't do too much. Hopefully a day off will perk them up a bit."

Verlander allowed runners in all but two of his six innings. The hard-throwing right-hander allowed six hits and four runs, struck out six and walked one. He reviewed tape of the home runs and thought they were good pitches, saying, "So I can't be too disappointed."

Orlando Cabrera had two of those hits. He extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a first-inning single, then added another in the third. His hitting streak is the longest by the A's this season and one away from matching his career high, accomplished in 2003 and '07.

Oakland bounced back with a winning series following a five-game losing streak that included getting swept at home by the Colorado Rockies last weekend.

"It's nice to see the hits come when we really needed them," Braden said. "It's a great turnaround. This is the kind of baseball we know we can play."

The A's avoided falling 13 games under .500 for the first time this season. They won for only the second time in eight games and for just the fourth time in their last 12 games at the Coliseum. Oakland went 3-6 on this homestand.

Kurt Suzuki added an RBI double for Oakland in the eighth and Travis Buck also had a double in his first start since being recalled from Triple-A Sacramento on Monday.

The Tigers are 15-6 against the AL West this season, including 4-2 versus the A's. The clubs face off again next month in Oakland for their last three meetings of 2009.

Notes

  • A's 2B Mark Ellis will join the team late Friday in Cleveland. He is staying back in the Bay Area during Thursday's off day for the birth of his second child, a girl, with wife Sara.
  • Cust struck out again in the eighth, his 81st of the year.
  • Giambi came in 1 for 16 against the Tigers this season.
  • Cabrera hasn't walked during his hitting streak, the second-longest such stretch in Oakland history.
  • Detroit is 20-8 in day games.
  • Oakland manager Bob Geren plans to rest Suzuki more regularly in the second half and give backup Landon Powell additional starts.
  • Verlander was called for his third balk of the year, matching a career high. He has a 5.47 ERA over his last four starts.
 
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

J. Cust
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 2
Oakland

D. Braden
IP 7.0
H 5
ER 1
BB 1
K 3
 
Detroit Tigers
Curtis Granderson, CF3000012 .257
Placido Polanco, 2B4000002 .255
Miguel Cabrera, 1B4010011 .331
Marcus Thames, DH3000121 .247
Ryan Raburn, LF3110112 .265
Magglio Ordonez, RF4000012 .260
Gerald Laird, C3011000 .236
Don Kelly, 3B3010011 .289
Adam Everett, SS3020001 .275
Totals3016127  
Batting
2B - Miguel Cabrera (16, Braden), Gerald Laird (11, Braden), Don Kelly (3, Braden), Adam Everett (11, Braden)
SH - Curtis Granderson (3)
RBI - Gerald Laird (20)
2-OUT RBI - Gerald Laird (6)
Team LOB - 5
Detroit Tigers
Justin Verlander (L,8-4) 6644162 3.54
Fu-Te Ni 0.2100010 3.86
Zach Miner 0.1000000 4.08
Brandon Lyon 1211110 4.03
Pitches-Strikes - Justin Verlander 102-68, Fu-Te Ni 10-8, Zach Miner 6-4, Brandon Lyon 27-16
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Justin Verlander 4-8, Fu-Te Ni 1-0, Zach Miner 1-0
Batters Faced - Justin Verlander 25, Fu-Te Ni 3, Zach Miner 1, Brandon Lyon 5
Oakland Athletics
Adam Kennedy, 3B4000031 .286
Orlando Cabrera, SS4020001 .250
Matt Holliday, LF2110201 .275
Jason Giambi, 1B3112022 .199
    Bobby Crosby, 1B1110000 .203
Kurt Suzuki, C4011002 .279
Ryan Sweeney, CF4110011 .270
Jack Cust, DH4112021 .225
Travis Buck, RF3010000 .239
Mark Ellis, 2B3000001 .208
Totals3259528  
Batting
2B - Kurt Suzuki (21, Lyon), Travis Buck (3, Ni)
HR - Jason Giambi (11, Verlander), Jack Cust (14, Verlander)
RBI - Jason Giambi 2 (40), Kurt Suzuki (32), Jack Cust 2 (41)
2-OUT RBI - Jack Cust 2 (17)
SB - Orlando Cabrera (3, 2nd base off Verlander/Laird)
CS - Matt Holliday (3, 2nd base by Lyon/Laird)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Kennedy-Ellis-Giambi, Cabrera-Crosby
Oakland Athletics
Dallas Braden (W,6-7) 7511130 3.13
Brad Ziegler (H,4) 1100010 3.25
Andrew Bailey 1000130 2.09
WP - Andrew Bailey (6)
Pitches-Strikes - Dallas Braden 92-59, Brad Ziegler 13-9, Andrew Bailey 17-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dallas Braden 9-8, Brad Ziegler 1-0
Batters Faced - Dallas Braden 26, Brad Ziegler 3, Andrew Bailey 4
Game Information
Attendance - 21238
Game Time - 2:18
Temperature - 65
Umpires - Home - Angel Hernandez, First Base - Randy Marsh, Second Base - Marvin Hudson, Third Base - Lance Barksdale