Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 9/9/12

SEATTLE - Any thoughts that getting blasted three straight games in Anaheim by the Angels midweek was going to ruin the Cinderella story being crafted by the Oakland A's proved to have no basis in reality this weekend in Seattle.

Jonny Gomes' three-run homer in the fifth inning gave A's starter Tommy Milone some room to work, and Josh Donaldson added a solo shot for insurance in the ninth to back the pitching of Milone and the Oakland bullpen for a 4-2 win over the Mariners on Sunday, completing a three-game sweep in the Pacific Northwest.

After being outscored 21-5 in Anaheim, the A's came back to be the team in charge in Seattle, outscoring the Mariners 16-4. Even after the sweep in Anaheim, the A's have remained in the hunt for the playoffs by winning 12 of their last 15 games and 18 of their last 23.

Seattle starter Jason Vargas had to work a bit to get through the first two innings, then settled down to retire nine batters in succession before a two-out single by Adam Rosales in the fifth. Coco Crisp followed with a single and Gomez unloaded his 16th homer, a three-run shot off the facing of the second deck in left field.

Vargas (14-10) has been plagued by home runs this year. He led the AL in that category for much of the summer and came into Sunday with 31 homers allowed, three behind Ervin Santana of the Angels.

He didn't allow another hit in pitching through the seventh inning, but Vargas found the homer by Gomes to be his undoing.

Donaldson's homer, his seventh, came off Seattle reliever Josh Kinney in the ninth. The homers give the A's 162 for the season, more power from the Oakland offense than in any season since hitting 171 in 2007.

Milone, who was coming off his shortest and least-effective (three innings, 10 hits, five runs) start of the season, carried a shutout into the fifth inning when Michael Saunders' two-out triple scored Brendan Ryan to get the Mariners to within 3-1.

An inning later, Kyle Seager led off with his 17th homer, a solo shot to right, and Seattle had a chance to get more on Miguel Olivo's single and stolen base. But Milone didn't let the Mariners get the ball out of the infield, forcing a weak pop fly and two strikeouts.

Milone (12-10) was in trouble much of the day, but he came up with big pitch after big pitch, leaving runners in scoring position in the third, fourth, fifth and sixth innings before manager Bob Melvin went to the bullpen to start the seventh. Milone struck out 10 in his six innings, and four of those came with men in scoring position.

The Mariners got the tying run to the plate in the ninth after John Jaso led off against reliever Grant Balfour with a double, but, thanks in part to a nice sliding catch in right field by Josh Reddick, Balfour survived to get his 16th save.

NOTES: Oakland catcher George Kottaras finally got a day off Sunday after a five-game stretch with 13 RBIs. In his first 16 games with the A's after being acquired from Milwaukee, Kottaras has five homers and 16 RBIs. ... Seattle manager Eric Wedge gave two of his regulars the day off Sunday, second baseman Dustin Ackley and first baseman Justin Smoak. Ackley was 8-for-33 (.242) and Smoak 5-for-25 (.200) on the homestand. ... The homers by Gomes and Donaldson give the A's 79 since the All-Star break, moving them ahead of the White Sox (78) for the most in the big leagues since the break. ... Seattle left fielder Saunders came into Sunday hitting 43 points higher against left-handed pitchers (.276) than against right-handers (.243). That's the second best differential for a left-handed hitter behind Texas' David Murphy, who has an 80-point differential.

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