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Indians Look To Continue Winning Ways In Last Home Series Before All-Star Game

(Sports Network) -  Gio Gonzalez scattered five hits over 6 2/3 innings and pitched the surging A's to a 3-0 win over Cleveland to open a three-game series.

Gonzalez (7-5) won for the first time in five starts coming off a pair of tough no-decisions in which he yielded just one earned run over 13 innings. On Friday, the lefty worked around four walks and fanned five.

Craig Breslow struck out three of the four batters he faced in relief of Gonzalez and Andrew Bailey worked a spotless ninth for his 16th save to complete the blanking.

Mark Ellis hit a two-run double in the sixth for some insurance and Jack Cust forced in a run in the game's first inning with one of his three walks. He also doubled for Oakland, which has won six of the last seven games.

Cleveland's Mitch Talbot (8-7) was touched for five hits and three runs -- two of them earned -- and walked four in a 5 1/3-inning start.

The Indians managed just five hits -- two from Jayson Nix -- as the club saw its season-high, five-game winning streak go by the wayside.

Cleveland's best chance to score came on one of the more bizarre plays to mark the course of a baseball season. The hosts loaded the bases on three straight singles with two down in the sixth to bring catcher Mike Redmond to the plate.

Redmond went the other way for a supposed base hit into shallow right. However, Oakland right fielder Ryan Sweeney charged the ball and came up firing to nail the slow-moving Redmond at first and prevent two runs from scoring.

The incident came with Oakland wielding a three-run lead as Sweeney and Cust drew back-to-back two-out walks in the first to put a run on the board, and Ellis roped a two-RBI double to left with the bases filled in the sixth.

The A's pitching staff did the rest from there on out. Breslow was summoned after Shin-Soo Choo doubled with two outs in the seventh, and Cleveland didn't have another runner reach base.

Oakland won two of three matchups versus the Tribe from April 23-25 this season at the Coliseum and is 8-1 in the past nine meetings between the teams. The Indians had won six of seven as the host in this series...Daric Barton had two hits for Oakland, which left eight men on. The Indians stranded nine runners.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.