for this game

Bowen hits two late homers as A's beat Rangers

Aug 9, 2007 - 5:26 AM By John Tranchina PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

ARLINGTON, Texas (Ticker) -- All Rob Bowen needed was an opportunity.

Bowen homered from both sides of the plate, including the go-ahead blast in the seventh inning, as the Oakland Athletics posted a 6-3 victory over the Texas Rangers on Wednesday night.

It was the Athletics' sixth win in their last nine games, while the Rangers lost for the sixth time in their last seven games.

"Offensively, obviously the big star was Rob Bowen who had just a huge day for us, carried the offense," Oakland manager Bob Geren said. "We haven't seen him play all that much yet, but (Wednesday) was pretty impressive. They were both big."

A backup catcher, Bowen was making just his fifth start behind the plate for Oakland since being acquired from the Chicago Cubs on July 16 in the trade for Jason Kendall.

Bowen's leadoff homer against Rangers rookie A.J. Murray (0-1) snapped a 3-3 tie in the seventh. Bowen added a two-run shot an inning later off Wes Littleton for a three-run cushion en route to his first career multi-homer game.

"I just got a fastball over the plate, and righthanded, I was able to put a good swing on it," Bowen said. "And lefthanded, I was able to work into a hitter's count and I got a fastball down and in that I know I can drive."

Suiting up for his third team this year, Bowen believes the key for him lies in just becoming more comfortable in his new environment.

"It's always tough to move to a new team, let alone do it twice in the middle of the season, especially for a catcher. I've got to learn a whole new pitching staff," he said. "My swing's coming around now, I'm getting comfortable and acclimated here and starting to feel good."

Murray surrendered his first homer in five appearances after being recalled from Class AAA Oklahoma on July 31.

"I just got behind in the count and tried to make a perfect pitch instead of sticking with my game plan and left it up over the plate," Murray said. "I'm sure he was sitting for a fastball and it was right there over the plate and he got it."

Oakland starter Lenny DiNardo (6-6) allowed three runs and eight hits with four strikeouts in six innings for his career-high third straight win. The 6-4 lefthander is 2-0 against Texas this campaign.

"I'm staying agressive," DiNardo said. "I can't get behind in the count and expect to be successful. I've been focusing on getting ahead and putting away hitters as early as I can."

"I thought Lenny had a nice performance," Geren said. "He mixed his pitches well, mixed inside. I thought he did a nice job."

Huston Street logged a scoreless seventh, Santiago Casilla worked the eighth and Alan Embree tossed a scoreless ninth for his 14th save.

"Embree has just had a heck of a two-week span for us," Geren said. "I can't say enough good things about him, he did the job in the ninth."

Embree has five saves and has yielded just one run in his last 12 games over 13 1/3 innings.

The Athletics opened the scoring in the second on Marco Scutaro's one-out bloop single into center that scored Mark Ellis, who led off with a double to left-center field.

With Oakland leading, 3-1, Brad Wilkerson drew Texas even in the fifth with his 17th homer - a two-run shot - over the wall in center field off DiNardo.

"I just try to do my best after a couple of days off," said Wilkerson, who had miss the last two games. "I tried to get my bearings back. He gave me a good pitch to hit and I didn't miss it."

"He is a tough out for me," DiNardo said. "I left it over the middle of the plate."

The Rangers tied it 1-1 in the second on rookie Jason Botts' RBI single that scored Sammy Sosa from third. It was Botts' first hit with a runner in scoring position in 10 at-bats since his recall from Class AAA Oklahoma on August 1.

But Oakland regained the lead in the third, as rookie Travis Buck led off with a double that one-hopped off the right-center wall and later scored on Jack Cust's RBI single against starter Kevin Millwood. Mike Piazza's groundout to short brought home Nick Swisher, who walked, for a 3-1 advantage.

Millwood left after six innings, allowing three runs and five hits with four walks and six strikeouts. The righthander was 1-1 with an unsightly 9.75 ERA in his last three starts.

"I feel like a made a major step today," Millwood said. "I felt I was a lot better. There were two innings when I wasn't real good but overall I felt like I gave us a chance. I felt pretty comfortable except for my curveball."

"He struggled a couple of innings but he got deep in the game," Texas manager Ron Washington said. "When he left after the sixth, we were in the game. You want your starter to pitch deep in the game and keep you in striking distance and he did that. He put up zeros in four innings."








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

    BATTERIES: OAK - LENNY DINARDO, HUSTON STREET (7TH), SANTIAGO CASILLA (8TH),
    ALAN EMBREE (9TH) AND ROB BOWEN
    TEX - KEVIN MILLWOOD, A.J. MURRAY (7TH), WES LITTLETON
    (7TH), JOA

    Aug 8 11:39 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY ROB BOWEN (2) TO RIGHT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 8TH OFF WES LITTLETON SCORED DONNIE MURPHY.
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 6, TEXAS 3
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: T BUCK (.276, 1-FOR-4)

    Athletics vs. RangersAug 8 11:07 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY ROB BOWEN (1) TO RIGHT WITH 0 OUT IN THE
    7TH OFF A.J. MURRAY.
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 4, TEXAS 3
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: T BUCK (.277, 1-FOR-3)

    Athletics vs. RangersAug 8 10:34 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY BRAD WILKERSON (17) TO CENTER WITH 1
    OUT IN THE 5TH OFF LENNY DINARDO SCORED IAN KINSLER.
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 3, TEXAS 3
    DUE UP FOR TEXAS: M YOUNG (.305, 0-FOR-1, BB)

    Athletics vs. RangersAug 8 10:09 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND OUT BY MIKE PIAZZA SCORED NICK SWISHER.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, J CUST ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 3
    TEXAS 1 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: M ELLIS (.266, 1-FOR-1)

    Athletics vs. RangersAug 8 9:22 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JACK CUST SCORED TRAVIS BUCK.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J CUST ON FIRST, N SWISHER ON THIRD, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 2
    TEXAS 1 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: M PIAZZA (.291, 0-FOR-1)

    Athletics vs. RangersAug 8 9:21 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JASON BOTTS SCORED SAMMY SOSA.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J BOTTS ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 1
    TEXAS 1 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR TEXAS: J SALTALAMACCHIA (.161, 0 HR, 3 RBI)

    Athletics vs. RangersAug 8 9:10 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MARCO SCUTARO SCORED MARK ELLIS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M SCUTARO ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 1
    TEXAS 0 TOP, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: D MURPHY (.235, 2 HR, 9 RBI)

    Athletics vs. RangersAug 8 8:59 PM