Published August 19, 2012
OAKLAND, Calif. – Yoenis Cespedes homered and drove in three runs, Bartolo Colon won his third consecutive start at home and the Oakland Athletics beat the Cleveland Indians 8-5 on Saturday night.
Josh Donaldson had two hits and an RBI while Coco Crisp added two-run triple for Oakland, which won its third straight after entering the night one-half game behind Baltimore for the second wild-card spot in the American League.
Colon (10-9) struck out three and scattered five hits over eight innings while beating his former club for the sixth time in 10 starts. The burly right-hander didn't give up a hit until the fourth and allowed only two runners past first base.
Carlos Santana, Shin-soo Choo and Brent Lillibridge homered for Cleveland, which has dropped four of five on its road trip.
On a night when the A's celebrated the 10th anniversary of their 20-game winning streak, Cespedes managed to steal a bit of the spotlight. He hit a two-run home run against Indians starter Corey Kluber (0-2) in the third and added an RBI single off reliever Cody Allen in the seventh.
It was the second home run in three games for the A's slugger after he went 54 at-bats without an extra base hit. Cespedes finished 2 for 4 and is batting an AL-best .377 (46 for 122) since the All-Star break.
That was all the support Colon needed to win for the fourth time in five starts. He gave up Santana's 13th home run with two out in the seventh but was otherwise stellar.
It's the ninth time this season Colon has not walked a batter and the 18th time in 24 starts with Oakland that he's walked one or fewer.
Grant Balfour recorded one out for his 11th save after Oakland's bullpen nearly let it get away in the ninth.
Evan Scribner replaced Colon and gave up Choo's two-run home run. Lillibridge later hit a pinch-hit two-run shot off Jerry Blevins to cut the A's lead to 8-5.
Jason Donald followed with a pinch-hit single before Balfour replaced Blevins and struck out Ezequiel Carrera to end it.
Choo, Asdrubal Cabrera and Michael Brantley had two hits apiece for the Indians, who continue to struggle on the road. They've dropped the first two games in this series after losing the final two games in Anaheim.
Colon didn't allow a hit until giving up a one-out double to Cabrera in the fourth. Choo followed with a single to move Cabrera to third, but Colon got out of it by getting Santana to ground into a double play.
The A's scored their first run off Kluber without getting a hit.
Cliff Pennington reached on a throwing error by Indians shortstop Cabrera, was sacrificed to second, stole third and scored on Donaldson's groundout.
Josh Reddick followed with a double to left center to drive in Crisp to make it 2-0.
After a visit to the mound by pitching coach Ruben Niebla, Cespedes lined a 1-1 pitch from Kluber onto the top of the scoreboard above the fence in left field.
Oakland added a run in the sixth on George Kottaras' RBI single then scored another in the seventh when Cespedes singled in Jemile Weeks.
Crisp's two-run triple in the eighth off Chris Seddon made it 8-1.
Kluber struck out two and walked three in five innings. He remains winless in four career starts.
NOTES: Indians leadoff hitter Jason Kipnis is 6 for 55 since July 27. ... The A's honored their 2002 team in a pregame ceremony celebrating the franchise's AL-record 20-game winning streak that season. Several ex-players attended, as did former manager Art Howe. The winning streak was the subject of the Brad Pitt movie "Moneyball." ... Oakland manager Bob Melvin is encouraged about the progress made by pitcher Brett Anderson after he threw a 40-pitch bullpen session Saturday and believes Anderson will the team before the season ends. "We'll find a way to get him in there at some point," Melvin said. "He's that good." ... 3B Brandon Inge is hitting off a tee and is flexing his right shoulder with little to no discomfort. He's eligible to come off the 15-day DL on Aug. 27. ... RHP Jarrod Parker (7-7), who pitches the series finale for Oakland, is still looking for his first win in August. ... RHP Justin Masterson (9-10) is seeking his third consecutive win for the Indians.