OAKLAND, Calif. – The Chicago White Sox kept swinging and missing against Tommy Milone, whose mix of changeups and fastballs had hitters guessing all game. That didn't fare well for Gavin Floyd on a night when he pitched plenty well enough to win.
Pinch-hitter Kurt Suzuki doubled in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning, Milone outdueled Floyd and the Oakland Athletics beat the White Sox 2-0 on Tuesday night.
"He pitched great. It's tough to pitch like that and get a loss. This one stings because your guy pitches such a good game and we couldn't do much on the offensive side," Chicago manager Robin Ventura said. "Their guy pitched a little better. He kept us off balance and we couldn't get anything going off him."
Daric Barton drew a leadoff walk in the eighth and Luke Hughes struck out before Matt Thornton relieved Floyd (1-3). Suzuki doubled to left and Barton scored easily, then Eric Sogard added an RBI single as the A's ended a 16-inning scoreless stretch going back to Sunday's 5-1 victory against Cleveland.
The A's finally took advantage of an opportunity.
"I don't know how many innings it was we didn't score. It felt like 100," A's manager Bob Melvin said.
Chicago's stellar pitching produced yet another strong outing on a road trip full of them, but the White Sox had their four-game winning streak snapped along with a six-game road winning streak.
A night after Jake Peavy pitched a three-hitter in a 4-0 White Sox win Monday — Oakland's fourth time being blanked — Floyd did his part. On Saturday in Seattle, Phil Humber pitched a perfect game in a 4-0 win over the Mariners.
"I feel like I pitched a great game but ended up losing. It stinks but you move on," Floyd said. "I'm just trying to continue what I've been working on and focus on every pitch. I did that until I walked that last guy and he came around to score."
Milone (3-1) matched Floyd all night until Oakland's offense finally capitalized. The A's did plenty on defense to back Floyd, turning double plays and throwing out Chicago's Brent Morel on a steal attempt in the eighth after he hit a two-out single.
"Against that lineup, pretty spectacular," Melvin said of Milone.
Milone, acquired in the winter trade that sent All-Star Gio Gonzalez to Washington, allowed three hits over eight efficient innings, struck out five and didn't walk a batter in a 98-pitch outing. Grant Balfour finished the four-hit shutout, Oakland's fourth, for his fifth save in as many tries in a game that went 2 hours, 27 minutes.
"It's obviously something I want to do. I want to finish the game," Milone said. "There's not any rush to get me out there and pitch over the pitch count."
Floyd, who came in with a 3-1 record and 2.35 ERA with 35 strikeouts in his previous seven career starts against the A's, allowed two hits and one run, struck out six and walked two in 7 1-3 innings.
The White Sox were trying for their longest road winning streak since a seven-gamer from Aug. 30 to Sept. 6, 2010. Still, Chicago's 7-2 start away from home was the club's best since winning 10 of its first 12 on the road in 2005.
Chicago's Alex Rios went 0 for 3 and had his 11-game hitting streak snapped, with Adam Dunn pinch-hitting for him in the ninth. Dunn struck out swinging to end it.
"I thought I was going to hit but if he thinks Adam is better there, let's go for it. We're trying to win ball games," Rios said.
A's left fielder Coco Crisp was held out of the lineup after he still experienced symptoms of his recent illness after playing all nine innings Monday following five games out because of a bug and inner ear issue. Melvin said Crisp will rest through Thursday's off day and perhaps be ready Friday at Baltimore.
Notes: Humber, who pitched the 21st perfect game in major league history Saturday at Seattle, flew home Tuesday morning to be with his wife before the birth of their first child. Humber — claimed off waivers from the A's on Jan. 18, 2011, is set to pitch Thursday at home vs. Boston. ... Jarrod Parker, who grew up in Indiana as a Chicago fan, makes his A's debut in Wednesday afternoon's series finale. "I grew up a White Sox fan, so it's going to be cool," he said. ... A's owner Lew Wolff watched batting practice from the field and confirmed Barry Bonds' trial lawyer, Allen Ruby, is now on the legal team for the club's efforts to build a new ballpark in San Jose.