OAKLAND, Calif. -- When rookie starting pitcher Jarrod Parker walked off the mound after eight innings of one-run ball against the New York Yankees in line for no decision, Oakland A's third baseman Brandon Inge had a message for him.
"Inge, he told me," Parker explained. "He said, 'I'm gonna get you one.' And he did. That's pretty sweet that he went up there and did it."
It wasn't another walk-off, but Inge delivered on his claim with a solo home run on the first pitch of the bottom of the eighth inning. It powered the A's to their third consecutive one-run victory over the Yankees -- a 2-1 triumph Saturday -- and pushed Oakland's MLB-best July record to 13-2.
When Inge made contact, Yankees starting pitcher Phil Hughes pointed to the sky, indicating he thought it was a harmless pop-up.
"I thought he just hit it really good and really high, to be honest," Hughes said. "Looking back at the replay, it's pretty silly, 'cause he hit it pretty good."
Hughes was pulled from the game after 7 2/3 innings. He allowed four hits -- two of which were knocked out of the park -- issued two walks and struck out six.
His counterpart Parker was even better, with a final line of eight innings, five hits, one earned run, one walk and five strikeouts.
The rookie gave way to another first-year hurler as Sean Doolittle entered in the top of the ninth inning to attempt his first career save. After a leadoff single by Alex Rodriguez, Doolittle struck out Robinson Cano, Mark Teixeira and Andruw Jones -- all on 94-mph four-seam fastballs -- to achieve his first career save in convincing fashion.
"That's really impressive," A's manager Bob Melvin said of Doolittle. "Talk about coming a long way. (He) closes a game out against the Yankees, that's a goosebump type of thing."
Curtis Granderson led off the sixth inning by drawing the first walk issued by A's pitchers in the series. But it didn't hurt Oakland, as Parker retired Rodriguez, Cano and Teixeira in order.
Cano finished the game 0-for-4, snapping his career-high hitting streak at 23 games.
The Yankees took their first lead of the series when they opened the scoring on Raul Ibanez's two-strike, two-out single up the middle, scoring Rodriguez in the fourth inning.
The lead didn't last long, though, as red-hot A's left fielder Yoenis Cespedes extended his career-high hitting streak to nine games with a blast to left field in the bottom of the inning. It was his second no-doubt home run to left of the series.
"He can really hit," Hughes said of Cespedes. "We were trying to be careful with him. You just gotta hope no one's on base when you go through his at-bats. He's been impressive."
"Strong," Yankees manager Joe Girardi added. "We're running into a hot hitter."
The A's needed stellar defense to end each of the first three innings and keep the Yankees off the board early.
In the first frame, Jemile Weeks leapt after Rodriguez's line drive and needed every inch of his 5-foot-9 frame to snare the scorched shot and end the inning, stranding Derek Jeter on first.
"That ball goes over Weeks' head and we got a run right away," Girardi reflected. "But he makes a great play, and we move on."
Parker induced Russell Martin to ground into a 6-4-3 double play to end the second, leaving Teixeira at third.
And A's center fielder Coco Crisp completed the trio when he caught up to Granderson's fly ball to shallow right-center field.
NOTES: Second-base umpire Mike Winters participated in his 3,000th game. ... With the Yankees on the West Coast, Yankee Stadium will host its first soccer match Sunday when Chelsea FC faces Paris-Saint Germain. ... Sunday's starter and Bay Area native C.C. Sabathia turned 32 years old. His 186 wins are the most victories by a pitcher prior to his 32nd birthday since Catfish Hunter, who compiled 210 before his 32nd birthday in 1978. ... A's catcher Derek Norris went 0-for-2 to extend hit hitless streak to 29 at-bats.
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!
|Best of Yardbarker||NFL News||MLB News||NBA News||NHL News|
Today's Best Stuff