for this game

Duchscherer dazzles as A's edge Red Sox

May 25, 2008 - 4:58 AM By Al Barba PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

OAKLAND, California (Ticker) - Justin Duchscherer's flirtation with history turned into a career outing Saturday night.

Duchscherer was perfect through five innings and held the Boston Red Sox hitless through 6 1/3 innings to lead the Oakland Athletics to a 3-0 victory.

In a career-high eight-inning performance, Duchscherer allowed just one hit before turning the game over to closer Houston Street, who pitched a perfect ninth to record his 10th save.

"I'm a command guy so I have to throw all my pitches for strikes," Duchscherer said. "After the first hitter - I got 3-0 on him - and after that I felt like I could throw my cutter and curveball whenever I wanted and on any count and kept them off-balance."

The win marked the first combined one-hitter by Oakland since Chad Gaudin and Rich Harden teamed for one against the New York Yankees on June 30, 2007, at Yankee Stadium.

Only Boston slugger David Ortiz's one-out single in the seventh kept Duchscherer (4-3) from having a chance to become the first Oakland pitcher to toss a no-hitter since Dave Stewart did it against the Toronto Blue Jays on June 29, 1990.

A converted reliever, Duchscherer allowed just the one hit, struck out four and faced just two batters over the minimum, as 17 of his 24 outs were recorded through the air.

"I don't think it hurt that I every time that Zuke (catcher Kurt Suzuki) wanted to throw a pitch, I wanted to throw the same pitch," Duchscherer said. "We were on the same page all night."

Duchscherer outdueled Boston ace Josh Beckett (5-4), who picked up the loss after allowing two runs and seven hits with nine strikeouts in seven innings. Beckett extended his streak of games with at least five strikeouts to 15.

"I think every pitch he threw ... the cutter, he threw a curveball. I don't remember him throwing one pitch that it didn't look like it had a purpose," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said of Duchscherer. "He may not have thrown a strike on every pitch but he just commanded everything."

One night after using the long ball to jump out to a lead against the Red Sox, the Athletics played small ball to score their first run.

Mike Sweeney opened the second with a bloop double inside the right field line, advanced to third on a sacrifice by Ryan Sweeney and scored after beating shortstop Alex Cora's throw home on Emil Brown's groundout.

After that, the story was Duchscherer, who kept the Red Sox off-balance throughout the night.

Duchscherer took a perfect game into the sixth before hitting Jason Varitek on an 0-1 pitch. Through the first five innings, 13 of the 15 outs were on fly balls. Duchscherer was able to keep the no-hit bid intact by striking out Coco Crisp, getting Alex Cora on an infield pop-up and retiring Jacoby Ellsbury on a ground ball.

It was at that point that the thought of a no-hitter entered Duchscherer's mind.

"After five I was thinking about it and then after six I was like, Wow, I have a no-hitter going," Duchscherer said. "But sometimes it works out and sometimes it doesn't."

Duchscherer opened the seventh by getting Dustin Pedroia on a fly ball to right field. For one of the few times on the night, Duchscherer fell behind in the count to Ortiz, who lined a 2-0 pitch into center field for Boston's lone hit of the game.

After pitching a perfect eighth, Duchscherer wanted to come out for the ninth, but Oakland manager Bob Geren decided that 101 pitches was enough.

"You always hope to finish it out. Every time I go out there I want to go nine," Duchscherer said. "After I came in from the eighth, Bob came over and said that's it. I fought with him a little bit. (Bob) said I was over 100 pitches (101).

"That's Bob's decision. I'm not going to second-guess him. I've had some injury problems over the last couple of years so I think he thought it was the best thing and I got to go with him."

Oakland added to its lead on Ryan Sweeney's seventh-inning homer off Beckett. Mike Sweeney tacked on some insurance in the eighth with an RBI single.








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

    BATTERIES: BOS - JOSH BECKETT, MANNY DELCARMEN (8TH) AND JASON VARITEK
    OAK - JUSTIN DUCHSCHERER, HUSTON STREET (9TH) AND KURT
    SUZUKI

    HOME RUNS: BOS - NONE
    OAK - RYAN SWEENEY

    May 24 11:25 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MIKE SWEENEY SCORED RAJAI DAVIS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M SWEENEY ON FIRST, F THOMAS ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 0
    OAKLAND 3 BOTTOM, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: R SWEENEY (.297, 1-FOR-2, SAC, HR, RBI)

    Red Sox 0, Athletics 3  Bot 8, 0 OutsMay 24 11:12 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY RYAN SWEENEY (2) TO RIGHT CENTER WITH 0
    OUT IN THE 7TH OFF JOSH BECKETT.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 0, OAKLAND 2
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: E BROWN (.251, 0-FOR-2, RBI)

    Red Sox 0, Athletics 2  Bot 7, 0 OutsMay 24 10:50 PM
  • 18
    roots
    RUWTbot Took away 171 roots

    Red Sox 0, Athletics 1  Bot 7, 0 OutsMay 24 10:48 PM
  • 189
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 32 roots (No-hitter)

    Red Sox 0, Athletics 1  Top 7, 0 OutsMay 24 10:41 PM
  • 157
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    Yankee82 Added 5 roots

    Red Sox 0, Athletics 1  Top 6, 0 OutsMay 24 10:34 PM
  • 152
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    RUWTbot Added 32 roots (No-hitter)

    Red Sox 0, Athletics 1  Bot 6, 0 OutsMay 24 10:30 PM
  • 120
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 32 roots (No-hitter)

    Red Sox 0, Athletics 1  Top 6, 0 OutsMay 24 10:21 PM
  • 88
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    RUWTbot Added 45 roots (No-hitter)

    Red Sox 0, Athletics 1  Bot 5, 0 OutsMay 24 10:18 PM
  • 43
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    RUWTbot Added 43 roots (No-hitter)

    Red Sox 0, Athletics 1  Top 5, 0 OutsMay 24 10:09 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    FIELDER'S CHOICE BY EMIL BROWN SCORED MIKE SWEENEY.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, E BROWN ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 0
    OAKLAND 1 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: M ELLIS (.242, 4 HR, 16 RBI)

    Red Sox 0, Athletics 1  Bot 2, 0 OutsMay 24 9:35 PM