Gray tries to put bad ankle behind him vs. Yanks

( - Oakland right-hander Sonny Gray hopes to put an ankle issue behind him on Friday when the Athletics continue a four-game series with the New York Yankees at the Coliseum.

Gray was cruising on Sunday against Tampa Bay, as he scattered four hits over five scoreless innings, but had to leave at the start of the sixth after getting hit in the ankle. X-rays came back negative, and he improved to 5-2 on the year to go along with an AL-best 1.77.

"(My stuff) was good," Gray said. "I felt really good out there, and that's why it was such a hard decision to not go back out there for the sixth, but it really wasn't worth it."

He had lost his two previous starts and was winless since beating Texas back on May 3.

Gray lost his only other start to the Yankees.

New York, meanwhile, will counter with veteran left-hander Chris Capuano, who has pitched to a 7.36 ERA in his two starts. Capuano has yet to get out of the fifth inning in his two losses and on Sunday against Texas he was hit for three runs (2 earned) and eight hits in just 4 1/3 frames

Capuano has faced the A's 4 times (1 start) and is 1-0 against them with a 3.68 ERA.

Oakland jumped out in front of this series on Thursday, as Brett Lawrie hit a two-run homer, Billy Burns added a solo shot, and the Athletics eked out a 5-4 win.

Burns and Josh Phegley both had two hits for the A's, who have won four of six.

"We played the game the right way tonight," Lawrie said.

Alex Rodriguez tied Barry Bonds for the second most RBI in MLB history (1,996), while Brian McCann went 3-for-4 with a home run and two RBI, but the Yankees failed to build off a three-game sweep of the Royals.

CC Sabathia (2-7), who did not make it out of the third inning his previous time out, was charged with five runs on eight hits in six innings.

The Yanks have lost 11 of their last 15.

"Guys got to get it done," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "That's what we're asking them to do, and sometimes it's going to be like that.

Oakland took four of six from the Yankees last season.