Toronto at Oakland

W: J. Samardzija (3-7) L: D. Hutchison (6-7) S: S. Doolittle (13)
HR: TOR - S. Tolleson (3)   OAK - None

Samardzija goes seven strong, wins in Oakland debut wire reports

OAKLAND, Calif. -- Jeff Samardzija arrived at the ballpark nearly five hours before making his first start with his new ballclub.

The right-hander left having secured a four-game sweep for Oakland with a performance that showed exactly why the Athletics were so eager to get him in a trade with the Chicago Cubs.

Samardzija pitched seven strong innings to win his Oakland debut and the A's beat the Toronto Blue Jays 4-2 on Sunday.

"First impressions are always important," said Samardzija after lowering his overall ERA to 2.74.

"Like I said yesterday, they didn't need me here. They were doing just fine without me. I don't want to come in and change anything and change the atmosphere. I just want to come in and add and do my part," he said.

He did just that, giving up four hits and one run with five strikeouts and one walk while earning his first win since June 7.

With the Cubs, Samardzija was 2-7 despite a 2.83 ERA. He was voted to the NL All-Star team but won't pitch and will spend the game in the AL dugout.

"He was excited as you could be," Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. "It was great to get him off to a good start like that. Terrific performance."

Samardzija, acquired a day earlier, received several standing ovations. He was cheered during pregame warmups and again after striking out the side in the seventh.

The veteran pitcher was equally excited after receiving some early run support, something that was scarce in Chicago. The Cubs scored two runs or fewer in 11 of his 17 starts in the NL this season.

Oakland had no such issue.

Jed Lowrie had two hits and scored twice, and leadoff hitter John Jaso added a pair of hits and an RBI for the A's, who won their fourth straight after getting swept in three games at Detroit.

Stephen Vogt singled and tripled to help the A's complete their first series sweep of the Blue Jays since taking a three-game series in 2000. Oakland hadn't swept a four-game series from Toronto since May 22-24, 1981.

"It was beautiful, man, that was awesome," Samardzija said. "Just getting one early run as a pitcher is the best thing ever. You can go out and pound the zone and understand if a guy gets on base so be it. And the way (the A's) take at-bats is outstanding."

Nate Freiman and Craig Gentry also drove in runs for the A's.

Lowrie doubled and scored in the second, then Oakland added two more in the fourth to extend their majors-leading record to 55-33.

Derek Norris added an RBI double in the eighth for Oakland.

Steve Tolleson had a pinch-hit home run off A's closer Sean Doolittle in the ninth for the Blue Jays, who have lost six straight on the road. Doolittle got his 13th save.

Toronto got a stellar outing from starter Drew Hutchison but for the fourth straight game had little success offensively. The Blue Jays went 0 for 18 with runners in scoring position during the series.

They didn't have many opportunities against Samardzija and two relievers. Toronto managed just four baserunners over the final eight innings and had only two get past first base.

"We got shut down big time," said Blue Jays manager John Gibbons after his club was outscored 14-4 in the four-game sweep. "We're just not very good right now. We're just not producing."

Oakland general manager Billy Beane got Samardzija and pitcher Jason Hammel for a package of prospects that included the two most recent first-round draft picks by the A's.

Samardzija pitched out of a two-on, one-out jam in the first by getting cleanup hitter Jose Bautista to ground into an inning-ending double play.

"That was probably one of the biggest pitches of the game for me," Samardzija said. "It allowed me to relax and then to come out and put a few on the board. I was able to relax and pound the zone."

Samardzija retired 13 of the next 14 batters he faced until Jose Reyes singled with one out in the sixth. Munenori Kawasaki followed with a double and Melky Cabrera's groundout scored Reyes.

Hutchison (6-7) struck out four and walked two in his first career start against the A's.

The punchless Blue Jays went into the game shorthanded. Edwin Encarnacion strained his right quad legging out an infield grounder on Saturday and was held out of the lineup. The Toronto slugger underwent an MRI before the game, though the results were not disclosed.


Cole Gillespie went hitless in three at-bats for Toronto after being claimed off waivers. ... Oakland OF Brandon Moss underwent an MRI on his injured left ankle. Results were not immediately known. ... Toronto OF Brad Glenn was designated for assignment. The Blue Jays also claimed Nolan Reimold off waivers from Baltimore. ... A's RHP Jesse Chavez will pitch the series opener against San Francisco on Monday. ... Blue Jays LHP JA Happ (7-4) takes the hill in the opener against the Angels.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
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Jeff Samardzija impresses in his Oakland debut, drawing standing ovations after allowing just four hits. (USATSI)
Jeff Samardzija impresses in his Oakland debut, drawing standing ovations after allowing just four hits. (USATSI)

Players of the Game

C. Gentry
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 0

J. Samardzija
IP 7.0
H 4
ER 1
BB 1
K 5

Related Video

Toronto Blue Jays
Jose Reyes, SS3110100 .258
Munenori Kawasaki, 2B3020001 .268
   a-Steve Tolleson, PH1111000 .245
Melky Cabrera, LF4011000 .299
Jose Bautista, 1B4000012 .296
Adam Lind, DH3000020 .328
   b-Darin Mastroianni, PH-DH1000000 .111
Colby Rasmus, CF3000010 .216
Juan Francisco, 3B3000020 .230
Cole Gillespie, RF3000000 .243
Josh Thole, C2000000 .270
   c-Dioner Navarro, PH-C1000000 .259
Drew Hutchison, P0000000 .667
   Aaron Loup, P0000000 .000
   Casey Janssen, P0000000 .000
a-homered for Kawasaki in the 9th
b-flied out for Lind in the 9th
c-grounded out for Thole in the 8th
2B - Munenori Kawasaki (2, Samardzija)
HR - Steve Tolleson (3, Doolittle)
RBI - Steve Tolleson (8), Melky Cabrera (44)
Team LOB - 3
E - Jose Reyes (11, Throwing)
Toronto Blue Jays
Drew Hutchison (L,6-7) 5.2833240 3.86
Aaron Loup 1.1100110 3.02
Casey Janssen 1211000 1.35
WP - Drew Hutchison (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Drew Hutchison 103-60, Aaron Loup 21-13, Casey Janssen 18-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Drew Hutchison 4-9
Batters Faced - Drew Hutchison 27, Aaron Loup 6, Casey Janssen 5
Oakland Athletics
John Jaso, C3021001 .269
   a-Derek Norris, PH-C1011100 .306
Alberto Callaspo, 3B5000007 .232
Yoenis Cespedes, LF4010020 .262
Josh Donaldson, DH4000022 .241
Stephen Vogt, RF4120002 .356
   Coco Crisp, CF0000000 .291
Jed Lowrie, SS4220001 .224
Nate Freiman, 1B4011001 .263
Nick Punto, 2B3000113 .218
Craig Gentry, CF-RF3121102 .286
Jeff Samardzija, P0000000 .176
   Eric O'Flaherty, P0000000 .000
   Sean Doolittle, P0000000 .000
a-walked for Jaso in the 6th
2B - John Jaso (13, Hutchison), Derek Norris (12, Janssen), Jed Lowrie (22, Hutchison)
3B - Stephen Vogt (2, Loup)
RBI - John Jaso (26), Derek Norris (36), Nate Freiman (5), Craig Gentry (6)
2-OUT RBI - John Jaso (8), Derek Norris (17), Craig Gentry (3)
SB - Nick Punto (3, 2nd base off Hutchison/Thole)
Team LOB - 10
DP - Lowrie-Punto-Freiman
Oakland Athletics
Jeff Samardzija (W,3-7) 7411150 2.74
Eric O'Flaherty (H,1) 1000000 0.00
Sean Doolittle (S,13) 1111011 2.98
Pitches-Strikes - Jeff Samardzija 108-75, Eric O'Flaherty 8-5, Sean Doolittle 14-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jeff Samardzija 9-6, Eric O'Flaherty 3-0
Batters Faced - Jeff Samardzija 25, Eric O'Flaherty 3, Sean Doolittle 4
Game Information
Attendance - 22897
Game Time - 2:46
Temperature - 68
Umpires - Home - Gabe Morales, First Base - Chad Fairchild, Second Base - Victor Carapazza, Third Base - Bill Miller