Kottaras, Pennington, Reddick power A’s past Indians
Cleveland, OH, United States (4E Sports) – Reserve catcher George Kottaras and second baseman Cliff Pennington sparked a five-run fourth inning and Josh Reddick drove in three runs to carry the Oakland A’s to their sixth straight win with a 12-7 victory over the Cleveland Indians Thursday at Progressive Field.
The A’s have now won eight of nine and 12 of 14. For the first time since the conclusion of the 2006 campaign, the A’s are more than 15 games over .500. The victory also strengthened Oakland’s grip on the American League Wild Card race lead.
Kottaras broke a 1-1 tie in the fourth with a three-run double to center before Pennington hit a two-run shot to put the A’s ahead for good, 6-1, en route to a four-game series sweep of the Indians.
In the fifth, Reddick contributed two-run shot — the third home run allowed by Justin Masterson (10-12) – before adding an RBI single in the sixth to cap his outstanding play and starter Jarrod Parker (9-7) pitched five innings, allowing five earned runs on nine hits with three walks and three strikeouts.
Masterson failed to save the Indians from their fifth straight defeat as he was pulled out after four innings with eight hits and eight earned runs. His performance was a far cry from his last start against the New York Yankees where he had just one earned run on seven hits in 6 2/3 innings.
This marks the fifth time this season Masterson has surrendered at least eight scores in an outing, tying Mel Harder’s 1936 club record for games with at least eight runs surrendered.
Masterson’s misery started in the third inning when Coco Crisp hit a solo shot to deep right to tie the count at one before Kottaras and Pennington fueled a five-run fourth inning.
One frame later, Reddick continued his hot hitting with a two-run shot. He tallied 12 hits in the four games, including two homers.
In the sixth, Oakland pushed its lead to 10-3 following a RBI sacrifice fly by shortstop Stephen Drew and an RBI single by Reddick. The Indians struck for three runs in the bottom of the sixth but the A’s answered right back with a RBI sacrifice fly from Chris Carter.
Catcher Lou Marson hit an RBI single in the seventh to add another run for the Indians but A’s responded in the ninth with a solo shot from third baseman Josh Donaldson.