DETROIT (AP) — Paul Blackburn threw 6 2/3 strong innings to improve to 4-0 as the Oakland A’s beat the Detroit Tigers 2-0 on Monday night to snap a season-high nine-game losing streak.
“It was a complete game,” A’s manager Mark Kotsay said. “That’s what it takes to get out of these situations when you haven’t had success as a team. It takes a good group effort and all around tonight, I thought the team played really good baseball.”
Tony Kemp hit a solo home run in the third and Chad Pinder added an RBI single in the fourth.
“I just saw a changeup and I got my foot down and tried to put the best swing on it I could,” Kemp said. “I’m just happy (Austin) Meadows didn’t rob a home run from me. Feels good to contribute to the team.
“When you’re on a losing streak, it feels like it’s never going to end. So to slap hands with guys today felt really good.”
Blackburn gave up four hits and struck out three before leaving in the seventh inning. Despite walking two batters, rookie Dany Jiménez escaped damage and earned his fifth save to finish off the four-hitter.
“It’s been a long time since I got into the seventh,” Blackburn said. “Anytime you can put a start together like that, it feels good.”
The Tigers, who managed just four hits and have been shut out in two consecutive games, have lost six in a row and 13 of their last 15.
“There’s growing frustration across the board,” Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said. “We’re getting beat in relatively close games, for the most part and we expect more out of ourselves.”
Michael Pineda (1-2) took the loss, despite allowing only two runs on six hits in 6.2 innings.
Javier Báez and Hinch were ejected after arguing balls and strikes in the ninth after Báez was called out on strikes.
“Frustrating night to end with the loss and obviously the way it ended,” Hinch said.
Oakland LHP Cole Irvin (left shoulder soreness, 15-day IL retroactive to May 2) will throw a side and then the team will determine next steps. ... Detroit RHP Matt Manning (right shoulder inflammation, 10-day IL retroactive to April 17) will make his second rehab start for Triple-A Toledo on Friday in Louisville. RHP Casey Mize (right elbow sprain, 10-day IL on April 15) will make his first rehab start for Triple-A Toledo on Thursday in Louisville. OF Victor Reyes (left quad strain, 10-day IL on April 23) will start his rehab assignment for Triple-A Toledo Tuesday in Louisville and is expected to play 5-6 innings. LHP Tyler Alexander (left elbow sprain, 15-day IL, retroactive to April 30) has been sent to Lakeland, Fla.
The Tigers optioned OF Akil Baddoo to Triple-A Toledo and recalled RHP Rony García from Triple-A Toledo. ... The A’s selected outfielder Luis Barrera from Triple-A Las Vegas Monday and started him in right field, batting ninth. Barrera batted .286 in 23 games with las Vegas. Oakland designated OF Billy McKinney for assignment.
Athletics: Game 1: RHP Frankie Montas (2-2, 3.44). Montas is 4-2 with a 5.01 ERA in seven career appearances, including six starts, against Detroit. He was 2-0 with a 2.13 ERA in two starts last year. Game 2: RHP Adrian Martinez (0-0, 0.00). Martinez will be making his Major League debut. With Triple-A Las Vegas, Martinez is 0-2 with a 7.45 ERA in five starts.
Tigers: Game 1: LHP Tarik Skubal (1-2, 3.04). Skubal is 0-2 with a 7.00 ERA in two career starts against Oakland. Game 2: Alex Faedo (0-0, 3.60). Faedo made his Major League debut May 4 against the Pittsburgh Pirates, allowing two runs on eight hits in five innings. Faedo will be the 27th man for the second game of the doubleheader.
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