A's stop streaking Indians

Associated Press
Published September 13, 2005

CLEVELAND - Dan Haren walked over to the stereo, skipped to a CD track of his liking, pushed play and smiled. Soon, there were heads bobbing to the beat in every corner of Oakland's clubhouse.

Haren didn't mind taking over as DJ. Whatever the Athletics needed, he was more than willing to give them.

Haren held baseball's hottest team to four singles in 62/3 innings and pushed Oakland closer in the wild-card standings as the A's beat Cleveland 2-0 Monday night, stopping the Indians' seven-game winning streak.

Haren made sure the A's took the opener of a three-game series they can't afford to lose. Oakland, a major league-best 36-20 since the All-Star break, beat C.C. Sabathia to pull within 11/2 games of the wild card-leading Indians. The A's closed within a game of the Angels in the West.

"By far, it's the happiest I've been after a win all year," said Haren, who lasted 22/3 innings in his previous start, a no-decision against Seattle. "With Sabathia on the mound, I knew I had to step it up tonight. I'm happy for my team. That's the way I'm supposed to pitch because these games are so, so important."

The A's made three errors but did just enough offensively to hand Sabathia his first loss since July 30. Jason Kendall hit a run-scoring single in the third off the left-hander, and Mark Kotsay delivered a sacrifice fly in the seventh against reliever Scott Sauerbeck.

"We had a little ragged play," Oakland manager Ken Macha said. "But the pitching raised it up a little bit."

Cleveland, 19-7 since Aug.16, has a one-game edge over the Yankees.

Sabathia won his previous seven starts, but he wasn't as sharp this time and constantly had to work out of trouble because of five walks. He allowed one earned run and four hits in six innings.

RED SOX 6, BLUE JAYS 5 (11): David Ortiz hit two home runs, including a drive in the 11th that lifted visiting Boston.

Manny Ramirez also homered for the Red Sox, who recovered after wasting a 5-0 lead and moved 31/2 ahead of the second-place Yankees in the East.

Ortiz homered off Ted Lilly in the fourth and hit the go-ahead drive against Pete Walker for his eighth multihomer game this season. Ortiz has 40 homers, one short of the career high he set last season, and joined Carl Yastrzemski (1969 and '70) as the only Boston players with consecutive 40-homer seasons.

Toronto scored five in the seventh after starter Bronson Arroyo allowed the first three batters to reach. Gabe Gross had a run-scoring single off Keith Foulke, Russ Adams hit a sacrifice fly off Foulke and Vernon Wells hit a three-run homer off Mike Timlin.

TWINS 2, TIGERS 1: Kyle Lohse won in his first start since a tirade that followed his early removal from a game, leading visiting Minnesota.

Lohse allowed one run and six hits in seven innings, stopped the Twins' three-game losing streak. On Sept.6, Lohse damaged the door to manager Ron Gardenhire's office with a bat after being pulled after two innings.

The pair met for about a half-hour Friday and said they settled their differences.

MARINERS 8, ANGELS 1: Joel Pineiro allowed three hits into the eighth and Raul Ibanez homered and had four hits for host Seattle.

Richie Sexson hit a two-run homer in the third, his 35th, to put the Mariners ahead 2-1. Ibanez stole home on a double steal in the fifth and hit his 18th homer in the seventh.

Pineiro, who entered with a 5.43 ERA, has turned a dismal season around this month. In three starts spanning 221/3 innings, he has allowed four runs for a 1.61 ERA.

ORIOLES 4, RANGERS 2: Daniel Cabrera struck out seven to win his second straight start since coming off the disabled list, and visiting Baltimore scored twice in the second when Kevin Mench dropped a fly ball.