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Oakland at Seattle

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Oakland (57-56) «010120010580
Seattle (44-71)000000100140

A's Braden hurls four-hitter for fourth career complete game

CBSSports.com wire reports
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SEATTLE -- Dallas Braden wasn't perfect this time, but he was still awfully good.

The Oakland left-hander looked as good as he has in months against the Seattle Mariners on Wednesday, tossing a four-hitter for his fourth career complete game in a 5-1 victory.

Braden (7-8) won for just the third time in nine decisions since throwing the 19th perfect game in major league history against Tampa Bay on May 9. He went 0-5 in nine starts after his gem before landing on the disabled list from June 23-July 20 with left elbow tightness.

"He's just sharp mentally and physically right now," A's manager Bob Geren said. "He had a real good changeup with two different speeds today. He was able to pitch inside enough to keep both lanes open for his fastball. He threw a lot of strikes."

Braden was effective and efficient, throwing just 104 pitches and 69 strikes. He walked two and struck out six while improving to 3-1 with a 2.97 ERA since coming off the DL.

"He's got a really good changeup and got a lot of swings and misses on the changeup," said the Mariners' Russell Branyon. "He spotted his heater and had good command today."

Mark Ellis supported him with three doubles and drove in three runs, most of the damage coming against Luke French (1-3). He allowed four runs and seven hits in six innings.

The Mariners had won the first two games in the series, Ellis playing a key role in each one. He hit into a triple-play Monday, the first for the Mariners in 15 years, and struck out three times Tuesday against Felix Hernandez before finishing with a career-high three doubles.

"It was a series of threes -- triple play, three strikeouts and three doubles," Ellis said. "It was definitely an interesting series, as long as I get the three hits in there. But no more triple plays."

Ellis had entered the game with just one extra-base hit over his previous 18 games.

"He's always been a guy who could split a gap, hit some doubles," Geren said. "He was just in extra-base-hit drought. They were all hit hard, too."

Ellis hit the first double to open the second, stole third and scored when Coco Crisp hit a sharp single to left. The A's added a run in the fourth when Rajai Davis hit a one-out double into the left-field corner, and Landon Powell lifted a two-out single into shallow center.

"The one to Powell was big," French said. "I had two strikes on him and two outs and was trying to go away and left it up and away. And he hit it. They took advantage of the mistakes and that was pretty much the game."

The A's added two more runs in the fifth, when Ellis ripped a double down the third-base.

Just three Mariners reached base off Braden through the first six innings, but he still faced the minimum number of batters to that point. All three were wiped away with double plays.

The Mariners finally put together a meager rally in the seventh, when Ichiro Suzuki and Jose Lopez singled. Branyan walked to load the bases with one out, and Franklin Gutierrez hit a sacrifice fly that was caught by left fielder Chris Carter on the warning track.

Braden thought it was a grand slam.

"Absolutely. I was just thinking that I hope Carter is 7-foot-12 and had a shot to get over the fence and catch it," Braden said. "I thought [Gutierrez] got it."

Casey Kotchman bounced out to first to end the threat, and Ellis finished the scoring with a RBI double in the eighth. It scored Cliff Pennington all the way from first.

Ellis is hitting .423 (11 of 26) against Seattle this season.

Notes

  • A's RHP Ben Sheets had Tommy John surgery on his right elbow Monday. The club did not supply specifics on the surgery until 48 hours afterward. Sheets had been told that his ulnar collateral ligament was not involved, but Texas Rangers team surgeon Dr. Keith Meister found the UCL damage during the operation. He transferred the tendon along with repairing the flexor tendon and pronator tendon. Sheets signed a one-year deal with the A's this season.
  • A's SS Adam Rosales left the game in the second with a hurt right ankle. Cliff Pennington replaced him.
  • Mariners OF Michael Saunders missed starting his sixth straight game with a sore neck after his crash into the outfield wall Aug. 5. He did enter Monday's game as a pinch runner.
 
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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Dallas Braden is effective in throwing 104 pitches, 69 for strikes, and whiffs six batters. (AP)
Dallas Braden is effective in throwing 104 pitches, 69 for strikes, and whiffs six batters. (AP)

Players of the Game
Oakland

M. Ellis
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 0
RBI 3
Oakland

D. Braden
IP 9.0
H 4
ER 1
BB 2
K 6
 
Oakland Athletics
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Coco Crisp, CF5011022 .268
Daric Barton, 1B4010103 .273
Kurt Suzuki, DH4110001 .254
Kevin Kouzmanoff, 3B3000101 .264
Adam Rosales, SS1000002 .271
    Cliff Pennington, SS2200102 .259
Mark Ellis, 2B4133010 .264
Rajai Davis, RF-LF4110002 .275
Chris Carter, LF3000112 .000
    Gabe Gross, RF0000000 .240
Landon Powell, C3011102 .228
Totals3358554  
Batting
2B - Daric Barton (26, French), Mark Ellis 3 (13, French, French, Seddon), Rajai Davis (21, French)
RBI - Coco Crisp (23), Mark Ellis 3 (30), Landon Powell (8)
2-OUT RBI - Coco Crisp (9), Mark Ellis 2 (10), Landon Powell (4)
SB - Mark Ellis (4, 3rd base off French/Bard)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
DP - Kouzmanoff-Ellis-Barton, Ellis-Pennington-Barton, Ellis-Pennington-Barton
Oakland Athletics
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Dallas Braden (W,7-8) 9411260 3.56
Pitches-Strikes - Dallas Braden 104-69
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dallas Braden 8-10
Batters Faced - Dallas Braden 30
Seattle Mariners
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Ichiro Suzuki, RF4110000 .310
Chone Figgins, 2B3000111 .253
Jose Lopez, 3B4010011 .240
Russell Branyan, DH2010110 .245
Franklin Gutierrez, CF2011001 .250
Casey Kotchman, 1B3000004 .214
Josh Bard, C3000020 .219
Matt Tuiasosopo, LF3000000 .157
Josh Wilson, SS3000010 .247
Totals2714126  
Batting
SF - Franklin Gutierrez (5)
RBI - Franklin Gutierrez (48)
Team LOB - 2
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Matt Tuiasosopo 1
DP - Wilson-Kotchman
Seattle Mariners
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Luke French (L,1-3) 6744320 4.96
Brian Sweeney 1.1000010 3.52
Chris Seddon0111100 3.55
Jamey Wright 1.2000110 5.05
Pitches-Strikes - Luke French 91-56, Brian Sweeney 20-12, Chris Seddon 7-3, Jamey Wright 20-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Luke French 4-11, Brian Sweeney 1-2, Jamey Wright 3-0
Batters Faced - Luke French 27, Brian Sweeney 4, Chris Seddon 2, Jamey Wright 5
Game Information
Attendance - 31560
Game Time - 2:17
Temperature - 67
Umpires - Home - Dan Iassogna, First Base - Dale Scott, Second Base - Jerry Meals, Third Base - Cory Blaser