Niemann nearly goes distance at Rays top A'sAug 6, 2011 - 5:55 AM
Niemann (6-4) gave up four runs on seven hits and struck out eight while walking one to win his fifth straight decision. He's unbeaten in his last eight starts and hasn't lost since May 4 against Toronto. Kyle Farnsworth recorded the final out.
Ben Zobrist ripped a two-run single and added a double, while B.J. Upton finished 3-for-3 with a pair of RBI for the Rays, who have won three in a row.
Coco Crisp smacked a two-run home run while Hideki Matsui added a solo homer for the A's, who have lost four consecutive games.
Guillermo Moscoso (4-6) threw 93 pitches in 4 2/3 innings to take the loss. He gave up four runs on six hits while walking three and striking out three.
"I thought his stuff was pretty good, and then it looked like he hit a wall," A's manager Bob Melvin said of his starter.
In the home half of the fourth, the Rays loaded the bases with one out on walks to Zobrist and Matt Joyce and a single by Upton. Robinson Chirinos followed and slammed a ball off the leg of Moscoso, who gathered himself and took the sure out at first base, allowing Zobrist to cross the plate with the game's first run. Following the RBI, the Rays were left with runners on second and third with two down, but could not capitalize any further as Moscoso got Sean Rodriguez to ground out to end the inning.
The Rays tacked on three runs in the fifth. Johnny Damon slapped a single to center with one out and Evan Longoria followed with an RBI double into the right-center field gap to push the lead to 2-0. Following a Zobrist pop-out, Casey Kotchman lined a double down into the right field corner to chase Longoria home.
Later in the inning, Moscoso was pulled in favor of Fautino De Los Santos, who uncorked a wild pitch which allowed Kotchman to advance to third. After Upton walked, Joyce roped an RBI single into left.
Oakland got on the board in the sixth, courtesy of Crisp's two-run homer.
Tampa Bay extended its lead to 7-2 in the sixth on a two-run single by Zobrist and an RBI base hit from Upton.
"We did everything well tonight," Rays manager Joe Maddon said of his team's performance. "Jeff walked the first batter but was magnificent after that. Offensively, we did so many good things tonight."
Oakland picked up a pair of runs in the ninth. Matsui led off the inning by blasting his 10th homer of the season deep into the seats in right. Following a Josh Willingham groundout, David DeJesus doubled and Cliff Pennington tripled. Farnsworth entered and got Kurt Suzuki to foul out to end the game.
Oakland is 0-4 on its current nine-game, 11 day road trip...The A's lead the season series with Tampa Bay, 3-2...Musical act The Go-Gos performed a post- game concert in honor of 80's night at Tropicana Field...Pennington, who returned to the lineup after missing two games due to Bell's Palsy, went 1-for-4...It was Crisp's fifth home run of the season...Matsui has a 13-game hitting streak.
- OAKLAND: 4
TAMPA BAY: 8
Aug 5 10:19 PM
- Cliff Pennington tripled to left scoring David DeJesus. Runner on third with two outs and Kurt Suzuki due up.
Athletics 4, Rays 8 Top 9, 2 OutsAug 5 10:13 PM
- Hideki Matsui lead-off Home Run (10) to right. Josh Willingham due up.
Athletics 3, Rays 8 Top 9, 0 OutsAug 5 10:06 PM
- B.J. Upton tripled to center scoring Ben Zobrist. Runner on third with two outs and Matt Joyce due up.
Athletics 2, Rays 8 Bot 8, 2 OutsAug 5 10:02 PM
- Matt Joyce grounded out second to first to end the inning.
Athletics 2, Rays 7 End 6Aug 5 9:30 PM
- Coco Crisp none-out, two-run Home Run (5) to right scored Jemile Weeks. Hideki Matsui due up.
Athletics 2, Rays 4 Top 6, 0 OutsAug 5 9:05 PM
- Fautino De Los Santos enters the game for the Athletics with a runner on second and two out.
Athletics 0, Rays 3 Bot 5, 2 OutsAug 5 8:55 PM
- Sean Rodriguez grounded out to first to end the inning.
Athletics 0, Rays 1 End 4Aug 5 8:29 PM
- OAKLAND: 0
TAMPA BAY: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
Aug 5 7:15 PM
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