Oakland, CA – Tommy Milone got off the schneid and helped the Oakland Athletics win a rubber match against the Minnesota Twins, 5-1.
Milone (10-9), who was 0-3 with a 7.50 earned run average over his last four starts, held the Twins to one run on two hits and a walk in eight innings for the A's.
"You know exactly what he's going to do," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "It's just if you can stay back on the changeup, and back on the breaking ball and square it up. He keeps you off speed enough. He's got a nice fastball, he can back-door some pitches and he locates really, really well."
Coco Crisp picked up three hits, including a home run, drove in a pair of runs and scored three times for Oakland, which has won six of its last seven games.
Liam Hendriks (0-6) remained winless after 13 major league starts. Oakland tagged the right-handed Aussie for four runs on six hits and three walks in five innings.
"He's gotta be a little bit better than that with the strike zone and work ahead a little better," Gardenhire said. "He's behind a lot of hitters. But, like I said, he competed in some big situations and got out of some jams he created for himself. There's a step in the right direction."
Prior to the game, pitcher Bartolo Colon was suspended 50 games by major league baseball for testing positive for testosterone.
"We have depth so it's one of those things where, obvious Bartolo is going to be missed and obviously he's a great pitcher, but we move on from now," Milone said. "You go out there and keep throwing and keep hitting and doing what we do best."
Oakland jumped ahead in the first inning. Crisp worked a leadoff walk, moved to second on a wild pitch, third on a fly out, and scored on a Josh Reddick base hit to right field.
Minnesota picked up its only two hits to begin the second inning. Ryan Doumit singled and moved to third when Matt Carson doubled. After Trevor Plouffe lined out, Drew Butera brought Doumit home with a ground out.
The A's regained the lead in the third. Cliff Pennington led off with a double and Crisp dropped a single into right field to put runners on the corners with no outs. After Stephen Drew walked to load the bases and Reddick popped out, Yoenis Cespedes grounded a single through the left side to score two and put Oakland up, 3-1.
After the Twins grounded into a double play with a runner on third to end the top of the fourth, the A's tacked on another run in the bottom half of the frame. Josh Donaldson doubled and scored when Crisp ripped a double off the right-field fence.
Crisp capped the scoring with a solo homer in the seventh inning to open up a 5-1 lead.
Ryan Cook took over for Milone, who did not allow a hit or a walk past the third inning, in the ninth and struck out the side to seal the win.
Minnesota has lost two straight, seven of eight and 11 of its last 13 games...Twins outfielder Josh Willingham did not reach base for the first time this season against Oakland (nine games) ... The Twins went 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position and stranded six ... Oakland went 4-for-12 with runners in scoring position and left six on base.