All good things come to an end, and on Wednesday night, two good things ended in Oakland, as the Athletics broke the Indians’ seven-game win streak and Josh Tomlin’s unbeaten streak all in one night with a 3-1 win over The Good Guys.
Trevor Cahill and three relievers shut the Tribe down on seven hits. Cahill moved to 5-0 and lowered his ERA to 1.79 with seven innings of one-run ball. David Purcey and Brad Ziegler combined to pitch a scoreless eighth, and Grant Balfour closed it with a two-K ninth to earn his first save of the season.
All the offense that Oakland needed was provided by David DeJesus, who slugged his first two homers of the year off of Tomlin. DeJesus hit solo shots in the first and in the fourth — two of only three hits allowed by Tomlin, who once again deserved better.
But as Indians’ skipper Manny Acta said: "…they (Oakland) pitched very well, too".
Cleveland’s only run came in the third on an RBI single from Travis Hafner, back in the lineup at designated hitter.
The Indians did have chances, putting two aboard on singles in the second; leaving two on in the fourth after Hafner’s RBI; getting a runner to second with two outs in both the fifth and the sixth; and stranding two in the eighth. That timely two-out hit was pretty lacking, but…sometimes the other guys get the job done.
Michael Brantley and Hafner each collected two of the Indians’ seven hits, but the Tribe left 10 men on base in the contest as Cahill and the Oakland bullpen minimized any damage.
The Athletics added an unearned run in the eighth to make it a two-run game when Mark Ellis reached on an error by Tribe third-baseman Jack Hannahan. With two outs and two on, Tony Sipp relieved Tomlin (4-1, 2.43 ERA) and allowed an RBI single to former Indian Coco Crisp before Sipp closed out the inning.
The good news on Wednesday was that Kansas City also lost, so the Indians’ lead over the Royals remains at 4 1/2 games.
The series will wrap up on Thursday at 3:35 when Jeanmar Gomez faces Oakland’s Brett Anderson.