Bullpen leads Texas past Oakland

5-10-08 -- Milton Bradley homered and drove in three runs as the Texas Rangers beat the Oakland Athletics 6-4 on Saturday night for their fifth straight win, despite having their shutout streak end at 33 innings.

Texas pitchers had posted three shutouts in a row and the scoreless streak was the second-longest in franchise history. Oakland ended it with an unearned run in the third inning.

Rangers starting pitcher Kevin Millwood left in the first inning with a strained right groin. He recorded two outs and threw 12 pitches before exiting.

Josh Rupe (1-1) replaced Millwood and yielded two runs in three innings. Frank Francisco, Eddie Guardado and Joaquin Benoit followed with scoreless relief outings for the Rangers, who won their fifth straight series for the first time since Aug. 23-Sept. 7, 2005.

Oakland’s Dana Eveland (3-3) allowed three runs, six hits and struck out five over six innings in the loss.

Frank Thomas hit a two-run double in the ninth off C.J. Wilson that cut the lead to 6-4. Oakland’s rally fell short when Emil Brown popped up to end the game.

With two outs in the third, Jack Cust doubled and Thomas walked. On Brown’s infield single, Ian Kinsler’s errant throw past first baseman Chris Shelton allowed Cust to score and ended the 33-inning scoreless string.

It was longest shutout streak since Baltimore pitchers posted 45 consecutive shutout frames to end the 1995 season.

The longest scoreless innings run in Rangers history is 39 in 1981.

Josh Hamilton, who had three hits, singled with two outs and scored on Bradley’s double in the first.

Bradley’s fifth home run of the season gave Texas a 3-1 lead in the third. It was just the second homer Eveland has allowed in 47 2-3 innings.

Ryan Sweeney had a sacrifice fly that brought Oakland within 3-2 in the fourth.

Hamilton hit an RBI single in the seventh. German Duran had an RBI double and Kinsler hit a run-scoring single in the eighth to extend Texas’ lead to 6-2.

Notes

Texas RHP Luis Mendoza, on the disabled list since April 24, threw 45 pitches in a simulated game Saturday. Mendoza will throw a bullpen session Monday before it is decided whether he needs a minor league rehab outing before coming off the DL. … Thomas hasn’t homered since signing with Oakland on April 24—a span of 16 games. … Texas C Gerald Laird went 0-for-4 to end his 10-game hitting streak.


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