Arlington, TX – Seth Smith went 2-for-4 with a solo homer, two RBI and three runs scored to back a solid start from Bartolo Colon, as the Oakland Athletics downed the Texas Rangers, 9-2, in the opener of a three-game set Monday.
Colon (4-2) scattered six hits and a pair of walks while giving up just two runs and striking out three over seven stellar innings to earn his first victory since April 23.
Coco Crisp finished 3-for-5 with an RBI and two runs scored, while Yoenis Cespedes, Brandon Moss, Chris Young and Eric Sogard each added an RBI and a run scored for the A's, who have won four straight since dropping two of three to the Rangers in Oakland last week.
"Our offense did great, Bartolo did great and that's how you win games, especially here against a good team like the Rangers," Smith said.
Josh Lindblom (0-1) was tagged with the loss in his first career start after yielding four runs on seven hits over 4 2/3 frames. The 25-year-old right- hander entered the contest with a 4-5 record over 101 relief appearances before converting to a starter earlier this season.
Jurickson Profar, making his season debut after being recalled from Triple-A Round Rock Sunday to replace injured second baseman Ian Kinsler, knocked in both runs for the Rangers, who had won two straight and five of six coming into the contest.
With the game locked at 1-1, the A's surged ahead with a four-run fifth. Crisp started the frame with a double, moved to third on a fly out and scored on Cespedes' double. Moss followed suit with a two-bagger of his own to score Cespedes for a 3-1 lead.
Lindblom then fanned Josh Donaldson before being removed for Joseph Ortiz, who served up consecutive run-scoring singles to Smith and Young to push the margin to 5-1.
"I felt good early on," Lindblom said. "The first four innings I was able to make pitches and kind of work myself out of the jam and then in that fifth inning I couldn't make a pitch."
Texas got a run back in the bottom half when Profar plated Mitch Moreland, who doubled to start the inning, with a sac fly to center, but the A's scored three more runs in the seventh to build some more separation.
Smith worked a leadoff walk and Young followed with a single off Texas reliever Cory Burns. Sogard's base hit to center scored Smith two batters later before Young raced home on Crisp's groundout to third.
Burns then uncorked a wild pitch to score Sogard for an 8-2 lead.
Donaldson donated an RBI single in the ninth to account for the final margin.
Smith staked the A's to a 1-0 lead with a leadoff shot in the second, but the Rangers evened the score in the third when Profar's groundout scored Geovany Soto, who led off with a walk before finding third on Leonys Martin's double to center.
Colon improved to 19-7 in 31 career starts versus the Rangers ... Including Smith's blast in the second, Oakland's last 13 homers have all been of the solo variety, tying the club record of 13 consecutive solo home runs from June 1-15, 2007 ... Oakland went 6-for-21 with runners in scoring position and left 15 men on base ... Texas finished 0-for-4 with RISP and stranded three.