|Oakland (57-48) «||0||0||3||0||0||0||1||0||x||4||7||0|
OAKLAND, Calif. -- Bartolo Colon finally received some early run support from his Oakland teammates. He didn't need much at all as it turned out, even if his fastball was lacking its regular zip.
The 39-year-old Colon scattered seven hits over eight innings, extending his shutout streak to 16 1/3 innings and leading the Athletics to a 4-1 victory against the slumping Toronto Blue Jays on Thursday night.
"Early in the game I didn't know if he had his best stuff, to tell you the truth," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "I don't know if our gun was off today, but you saw a lot of 86s, 87s [mph], which you don't normally see out of him. But he finds a way. He makes you make the adjustment."
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Colon (8-8) didn't do much out of the ordinary while winning his second successive start. The right-hander relied primarily on his fastball, changing speeds just enough to keep the Blue Jays off balance.
He retired 15 of 18 during one stretch and pitched out of a bases-loaded jam in the sixth by getting Rajai Davis to ground out. Colon had three strikeouts and one walk.
The A's staked him to a 3-0 lead following Josh Reddick's two-run homer in the third.
That's something Oakland hasn't done much with Colon on the mound. In 12 of his 21 previous starts, the A's were held to two runs or fewer.
"I don't pay much attention to it," said Colon, who has not allowed a run since the fourth inning against the New York Yankees on July 22. "It's more important for me to do the best that I can when I'm on the mound and let the team do whatever they want."
Oakland, held to no more than one run in three of its previous four games, moved past the Los Angeles Angels into second place in the AL West. The A's are 4½ games behind Texas.
The Blue Jays have lost five straight, matching their season high.
"We're in a stretch where runs are at a premium," Toronto manager John Farrell said. "It's difficult to string hits together right now. You have to credit Colon. He stayed out of the middle of the plate."
Eric Sogard singled leading off the third, went to second on a wild pitch and scored on Smith's single to right.
Reddick followed with his 23rd home run, a towering shot into the bleachers above the right-field scoreboard to give Oakland a 3-0 lead.
"[Colon] has done great all year and we haven't gotten him the run support that he deserves, so for me to be able to do that was huge," said Reddick, who was mired in a career-worst 0-for-21 slump before singling in the first. "I went home last night and had a long talk with [my] dad, and it seemed to work out."
The A's missed an opportunity to add on when Davis misplayed Coco Crisp's fly to left. Davis appeared to lose the ball in the lights as it sailed past his glove and rolled to the fence.
Crisp, who slowed to a trot on his way to first, raced to third but was stranded there after Brandon Moss later grounded out with the bases loaded.
Colon did the rest.
Henderson Alvarez (7-8) struggled with his control and lost for the second time in six decisions. He had a career-high five walks, pitched with runners on base in all but one of his five-plus innings, and struck out one.
Oakland made it 4-0 in the seventh when Inge singled home Chris Carter to extend his hitting streak to 12 games.
The Blue Jays scored in the ninth to avoid the shutout.
Four of Toronto's 10 hits didn't leave the infield.
|Josh Reddick (16) receives congratulations from Seth Smith after belting a two-run HR in the third inning. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Toronto Blue Jays|
|Brett Lawrie, 3B||5||0||1||0||0||0||1||.283|
|Colby Rasmus, CF||5||0||2||0||0||0||2||.246|
|Edwin Encarnacion, DH||4||0||2||0||0||0||2||.292|
|Kelly Johnson, 2B||4||0||0||0||0||1||4||.234|
|Yunel Escobar, SS||4||0||2||0||0||0||1||.256|
|David Cooper, 1B||3||1||1||0||1||1||2||.276|
|Rajai Davis, LF||4||0||1||0||0||0||3||.263|
|Yan Gomes, C||4||0||0||0||0||2||2||.193|
|Anthony Gose, RF||3||0||1||0||0||0||0||.206|
|a- Moises Sierra, PH||1||0||0||1||0||0||0||.250|
|a-hit into fielder's choice for Gose in the 9th|
|2B - David Cooper (5, Doolittle)|
|RBI - Moises Sierra (1)|
|Team LOB - 10|
|DP - Alvarez-Escobar-Cooper|
|E - Rajai Davis (7, Dropped line drive)|
|Toronto Blue Jays|
|Henderson Alvarez (L,7-8)||5||4||3||3||5||1||1||4.47|
|IBB - Reddick by Henderson Alvarez|
|WP - Henderson Alvarez (2), Steve Delabar (4)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Henderson Alvarez 94-49, Steve Delabar 23-13, J.A. Happ 51-34|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Henderson Alvarez 7-7, J.A. Happ 1-1|
|Batters Faced - Henderson Alvarez 24, Steve Delabar 4, J.A. Happ 11|
|Coco Crisp, CF||5||0||0||0||0||0||4||.248|
|Seth Smith, DH||3||1||1||1||0||0||1||.237|
|a- Chris Carter, PH-DH||1||1||0||0||1||1||1||.271|
|Josh Reddick, RF||4||1||2||2||1||2||2||.262|
|Yoenis Cespedes, LF||1||0||0||0||3||0||1||.307|
|Brandon Moss, 1B||4||0||1||0||0||0||2||.236|
|Brandon Inge, 3B||3||0||1||1||1||0||1||.212|
|George Kottaras, C||3||0||0||0||1||2||3||.207|
|Adam Rosales, SS||3||0||0||0||1||1||4||.148|
|Eric Sogard, 2B||4||1||2||0||0||0||2||.179|
|a-walked for Smith in the 7th|
|2B - Eric Sogard (3, Happ)|
|HR - Josh Reddick (23, Alvarez)|
|RBI - Seth Smith (39), Josh Reddick 2 (52), Brandon Inge (50)|
|Team LOB - 11|
|Bartolo Colon (W,8-8)||8||7||0||0||1||3||0||3.55|
|Ryan Cook (S,11)||0.2||1||0||0||0||0||0||1.79|
|Pitches-Strikes - Bartolo Colon 96-68, Sean Doolittle 14-11, Ryan Cook 11-7|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Bartolo Colon 9-12, Ryan Cook 2-0|
|Batters Faced - Bartolo Colon 32, Sean Doolittle 3, Ryan Cook 3|
|Attendance - 10823|
|Game Time - 2:47|
|Temperature - 63|
|Umpires - Home - Greg Gibson, First Base - Manny Gonzalez, Second Base - Gerry Davis, Third Base - Phil Cuzzi|