Fox News - Fair & Balanced

Sports


Athletics try to distance themselves from Rangers

(Sports Network) - The Oakland Athletics try to put even more distance between themselves and the Texas Rangers on Wednesday when the American League West rivals continue a four-game series at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington.

Oakland upped its division lead to three games on Tuesday, as Brandon Moss and John Jaso each hit solo home runs to support seven sharp innings from Jarrod Parker in the A's 6-2 victory.

The A's tagged Yu Darvish for a season-high five runs, with Moss adding a triple while scoring twice and Eric Sogard and Josh Donaldson contributing an RBI apiece.

Darvish (7-3) struck out 10 over six innings to run his MLB-leading total to 137, but surrendered four earned runs and had his winless streak extended to six straight starts.

Parker (6-6) was considerably more effective, limiting the Rangers' struggling offense to three hits and a pair of runs to help Oakland bounce back from Monday's 8-7 loss in the opener of this four-game set.

"(The Athletics) fought for their at-bats," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "They battled. If they got a pitch they liked, they didn't miss it. That's it right there. Parker moved his fastball around and had a good changeup. But he made some mistakes with some pitches, and we missed them."

The Rangers, on the other hand, have now dropped seven of eight and mustered two runs or less in each of those defeats.

Hoping to keep the A's in the win column on Wednesday will be lefty Tommy Milone, who is 6-6 with a 3.61 ERA. Milone lost to the Seattle Mariners on Friday, despite a solid effort that saw him allow two runs and five hits in 6 2/3 innings.

"I felt like early on in the game, I wasn't pounding the zone as much as I would like," Milone said of his last outing. "Especially a pitcher like me, I need to throw a lot of strikes and work the counts in my favor. I wasn't doing that the first couple innings, but I was able to take a deep breath and start throwing more quality strikes."

Milone is 0-2 in three starts versus the Rangers with a 2.50 ERA.

Texas, meanwhile, will counter with righty Justin Grimm, who has lost his last two decisions. Grimm lost to Toronto his last time out, as he surrendered seven runs and 10 hits in 7 2/3 innings to fall to 5-5 to go long with a 5.59 ERA.

"One inning has been the problem," Washington said. "He starts to elevate the ball. Sometimes when things start to happen, he has trouble getting in control of it. He'll learn. You call that gaining experience."

Grimm lost to the A's earlier in the season, permitting five runs in five innings.

Texas has split eight meetings with the A's this season.

06/19 10:55:13 ET