for this game

Blake and Barfield outshine Cust as Indians win

May 13, 2007 - 12:26 AM OAKLAND, California (Ticker) -- Jack Cust continues to swing a hot bat for the Oakland Athletics. The bottom of the batting order was scorching for the Cleveland Indians.

Cust belted his fourth home run in three games, but Casey Blake and Josh Barfield combined to go 4-for-6 with three RBI and three runs scored as the Indians halted a three-game skid with a 6-3 triumph over the Athletics on Saturday.

Entering with three homers and seven RBI in his previous two contests, Cust kept up the pace in this one, swatting a two-run shot that capped a three-run first inning for Oakland. Acquired from San Diego on May 3, the former first-round pick of Arizona has 11 RBI in six games this season - matching his career high set with Baltimore in 2003.

"I'm just trying to have good at-bats," Cust said. "I'm trying to get a good pitch to hit and not miss it. I'm feeling pretty good up there now. I felt good down in Triple-A and I'm just trying to ride it out."

However, that was all the damage allowed by Fausto Carmona (4-1), who was aided by the bottom of the Indians' lineup en route to his fourth straight victory. The Dominican righthander tossed seven innings, surrendering three runs, six hits and four walks with five strikeouts.

"I tried to make sure that I could get ahead of their hitters," Carmona said through an interpreter. "They are a very patient team and I knew that if I could get ahead ni the count, that they would have to swing at my pitches instead of me giving in and throwing them the pitches that they wanted to hit."

"He was able to get himself back on line after the first (inning)," Indians manager Eric Wedge said. "He just never gave in. That's as impressive a performance as we've seen from him. He's obviously been good early on, but for the way he went about it, and the way he had to go about it today, he was impressive."

Blake and Barfield began Cleveland's comeback in the second. With two outs, Blake drew a walk against Dallas Braden before Barfield smacked a triple to cut the deficit to 3-1.

"We were patient and stayed with our approach," Blake said. "We were able to put some hits together and get back in the game."

Two innings later, Blake made it a one-run game with an RBI single. After a flyout by Barfield and a passed ball by Oakland catcher Jason Kendall, ninth-place hitter Franklin Gutierrez legged out a grounder for a run-scoring infield single that knotted the contest.

"It's a solid lineup up and down," Blake said. "That means that every night, you can't just get it from one or two guys. Everyone in the lineup is capable of contributing, which is nice. It's a well-balanced lineup."

Third baseman Eric Chavez committed a throwing error on the play, allowing Blake to score and give the Indians a 4-3 lead.

Blake and Barfield struck again in the sixth to extend the advantage. Blake delivered a one-out single to right field, stole second and moved to third on Kendall's bad throw before coming home on Barfield's second three-base hit of the game.

"I had good at-bats today," Barfield said. "I saw the ball a lot better than I did last night and had a good approach, and it worked out for me."

With the 2-for-2 performance, Blake raised his average to .246 this season. Barfield improved to .212 by recording two hits in four at-bats.

Ryan Garko, who went 3-for-4 with two RBI in Friday's 8-2 loss, closed out the scoring with an RBI single in the seventh.

Aaron Fultz worked a perfect eighth inning and Joe Borowski retired all three batters he faced in the ninth for his 12th save.

Jason Michaels collected three hits for the Indians, who improved to 4-5 on their 10-game road trip.

"Our guys did a good job fighting through it," Wedge said. "We fought through some at-bats today and some guys got some key hits. Garko, Barfield, Blake, Michaels had a good day for us. We're not where we want to be right now, but this is the type of game that edges you in the right direction."

Making his third career start, Braden (1-2) lasted just four frames, surrendering four runs - three earned - and six hits. The 23-year-old lefthander walked one and struck out three while uncorking a wild pitch.

"If getting the hitter out in 10 or less pitches is the way to go, then I was almost perfect," said Braden, who threw 58 of his 84 pitches for strikes. "Clearly, I can't get as deep into pitch counts as I did today. You have to let them make contact, put them away or throw it over the middle and see what happens."

"Braden threw fairly well but just couldn't finish off their hitters," Athletics manager Bob Geren said. "Anytime you have long innings and a lot of pitches like he did, it will cost you."

Nick Swisher drove in the other run with a ground-rule double for Oakland, which had won four of five.








  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CLEVELAND 0 1 0 3 0 1 1 0 0 6 11 0
    OAKLAND 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 6 3 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: CLE - FAUSTO CARMONA, AARON FULTZ (8TH), JOE BOROWSKI (9TH) AND
    VICTOR MARTINEZ
    OAK - DALLAS BRADEN, KIKO CALERO (5TH), LENNY DINARDO
    (6TH), JAY WITASICK (7TH), HU

    May 12 7:12 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY RYAN GARKO SCORED JASON MICHAELS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, R GARKO ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 6
    OAKLAND 3 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: J PERALTA (.248, 1-FOR-3)

    Indians vs. AthleticsMay 12 6:15 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    TRIPLE BY JOSH BARFIELD SCORED CASEY BLAKE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J BARFIELD ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 5
    OAKLAND 3 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: F GUTIERREZ (.333, 1-FOR-2, RBI)

    Indians vs. AthleticsMay 12 5:50 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY FRANKLIN GUTIERREZ SCORED JHONNY PERALTA. ERROR
    BY ERIC CHAVEZ ALLOWED CASEY BLAKE TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, F GUTIERREZ ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 4
    OAKLAND 3 TOP, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: G SIZEMORE (.244, 0-FOR-2)

    Indians vs. AthleticsMay 12 5:11 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY CASEY BLAKE SCORED RYAN GARKO.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, C BLAKE ON FIRST, J PERALTA ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 2
    OAKLAND 3 TOP, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: J BARFIELD (.209, 1-FOR-1, RBI)

    Indians vs. AthleticsMay 12 5:05 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    TRIPLE BY JOSH BARFIELD SCORED CASEY BLAKE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J BARFIELD ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 1
    OAKLAND 3 TOP, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: F GUTIERREZ (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Indians vs. AthleticsMay 12 4:35 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY JACK CUST (5) TO LEFT CENTER WITH 2 OUT
    IN THE 1ST OFF FAUSTO CARMONA SCORED DAN JOHNSON.
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 0, OAKLAND 3
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: B CROSBY (.232, 3 HR, 12 RBI)

    Indians vs. AthleticsMay 12 4:26 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND RULE DOUBLE BY NICK SWISHER SCORED SHANNON STEWART.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, N SWISHER ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 0
    OAKLAND 1 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: E CHAVEZ (.257, 4 HR, 19 RBI)

    Indians vs. AthleticsMay 12 4:22 PM