for this game

Smith dominates as A's edge Blue Jays

May 28, 2008 - 6:33 AM By Al Barba PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

OAKLAND, California (Ticker) -- Rookie lefthander Greg Smith has held his own on baseball's best pitching staff. Unfortunately for Smith, his efforts haven't been rewarded too often.

Those fortunes finally changed as Smith threw 6 2/3 scoreless innings and Jack Hannahan and Bobby Crosby each drove a run to lead the Athletics to a 3-1 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday.

Smith (3-4) has been victimized by a lack of run support, as the Athletics managed just 3.18 runs per game in his previous nine starts. In his last five outings, Smith went 0-4 with a 3.41 ERA as Oakland scored a grand total of two runs.

However, Smith said he is not worried by the lack of run support as long as the A's keep winning.

"I'm not really concerned about my personal wins and losses," Smith said. "It's more about the team's wins and losses.

"This lineup is going to come out and fight every day they're out here. They're going to give it all they've got. If these guys are going to come out and give it their all, then you're going to work for them when they do that."

While the offense did not exactly produce an offensive explosion, Oakland scored just enough to extend its winning streak to a season high-tying five games.

In the process, Oakland put an end to Toronto's five-game winning streak.

Smith allowed six hits, walked one and struck out three. It marked the eighth start this season that Smith has pitched at least six innings and sixth time that he allowed two or fewer runs.

"(The key) was throwing strikes, keeping the ball in the zone," Smith said. "I walked a guy in the first inning and from that point on I was going to make them earn it," Smith said. "Once I got the ball in the zone, I just wanted to make sure I threw quality strikes after that."

Acquired in the offseason trade that sent Dan Haren to Arizona, Smith outdueled A.J. Burnett (5-5). Burnett allowed three runs - two earned - and seven hits in 5 2/3 innings. The righthander walked two and notched a season high-tying 10 strikeouts.

Toronto manager Jon Gibbons was impressed with Smith.

"He's good," Gibbons said. "He keeps you off-balance. We had that one chance when we got two runners on but couldn't capitalize. He was good. He was the story tonight."

The Athletics scored an unearned run in the second inning when Emil Brown singled to right field with one out, stole second and scored when the throw from Toronto catcher Rod Barajas hit him and caromed into shallow left field.

Oakland added to its lead in the fourth, scoring twice with two outs after a walk to Kurt Suzuki. Hannahan followed with a double to right-center field and Crosby capped the inning with an RBI single to center that gave the Athletics a 3-0 lead.

"I didn't throw enough strikes," Burnett said. "I had that one bad inning with two outs, gave up a double and single and didn't hit my spots. Basically I left pitches over the middle of the plate and they did what they were supposed to do with them."

Toronto avoided the shutout when Kevin Mench produced a two-out single in the eighth inning off reliever Alan Embree.

Huston Street pitched a scoreless ninth inning to register his 12th save in 14 chances.

Frank Thomas, who marked his 40th birthday by facing the club that released him earlier this season, had a third-inning double and then was forced to leave the game after suffering a slight strain of the right quadriceps.

The injury was a re-occurrence of an injury he suffered in Cleveland on May 13.

"I strained my quad tendon a couple weeks ago. I've been playing on it. It's been getting better," Thomas said. "That's the first time I really had to stretch out to get a double and I ran a little too fast and obviously strained it again. So hopefully it is just a strain. We will check it out tomorrow to make sure."

Thomas is planning on getting an MRI exam on Wednesday.

"Everything seems to be fine except that one area. That's that quad tendon area," Thomas said. "I'm hoping that it's nothing serious because I'm feeling like the old me. I feel really good. Sometimes you have to just keep pushing."






  • 10
    roots
    KB24 Added 5 roots

    Blue Jays 1, Athletics 3  FinalMay 28 7:24 PM


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

    BATTERIES: TOR - A.J. BURNETT, BRIAN TALLET (6TH), SHAWN CAMP (7TH), ARMANDO
    BENITEZ (8TH) AND ROD BARAJAS
    OAK - GREG SMITH, ALAN EMBREE (7TH), HUSTON STREET
    (9TH) AND KURT S

    May 28 12:52 AM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY KEVIN MENCH SCORED ALEX RIOS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, K MENCH ON FIRST, S ROLEN ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 1
    OAKLAND 3 TOP, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: L OVERBAY (.281, 0-FOR-3)

    Blue Jays 1, Athletics 3  Top 8, 0 OutsMay 28 12:34 AM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY BOBBY CROSBY SCORED JACK HANNAHAN.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, B CROSBY ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 0
    OAKLAND 3 BOTTOM, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: J CUST (.248, 0-FOR-2)

    Blue Jays 0, Athletics 3  Bot 4, 0 OutsMay 27 11:25 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY JACK HANNAHAN SCORED KURT SUZUKI.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J HANNAHAN ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 0
    OAKLAND 2 BOTTOM, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: B CROSBY (.264, 0-FOR-2)

    Blue Jays 0, Athletics 2  Bot 4, 0 OutsMay 27 11:23 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY ROD BARAJAS ALLOWED EMIL BROWN TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, NONE ON, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 0
    OAKLAND 1 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: M ELLIS (.239, 0-FOR-0)

    Blue Jays 0, Athletics 1  Bot 2, 0 OutsMay 27 10:41 PM
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    Yankee82 Added 5 roots

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsMay 27 9:02 PM