For the first time since June 11, at 32-31, the A's are once again over the .500 mark on the season. With a strong performance today to secure the series win (and 12 hits to boot!), the A's beat Buchholz and the Sox this afternoon to continue their hot play. Gio Gonzalez picked up his 9th win of the season in his six innings as he did just enough to keep the A's in the game; allowing seven hits and four runs. Spectacular bullpen work by the flame-throwing Rodriguez in the seventh (up and over 100 MPH several times), Ziegler in the eighth, and Wuertz in the ninth kept the Red Sox off the board after Gio's departure and led the A's to a big series win.
Gio allowed the first run of the game in the very first inning, and although the A's loaded the bases themselves in the bottom of the inning, they failed to score, as Kouzmanoff hit into an inning-ending double play. But Matt Watson decided the second inning was the perfect time for his first major league homerun as he blasted one to tie the game. Jack Cust followed with a moon shot of his own in the third, putting the A's up 3-1.
The Red Sox would get a run back in the fifth to tighten the score, but the A's would not relent; they led off the fifth inning with back to back singles by Suzuki and Cust to set the table. Ellis came through with the one-out RBI single to score the A's fourth run, and Rajai Davis had the game-deciding, two-out, two-run RBI single to clinch the win. The A's six runs, combined with the stellar bullpen work, would be enough, despite having two runners thrown out at the plate in the game. The A's took advantage of a less-than-sharp Red Sox team, both on defense and on the mound (Buchholz hasn't pitched in a month) to take the game.
The Angels finally lost a game today, and Texas is playing right now. The A's are doing all they can to get back in the race; but they need a little help. Tomorrow is an off-day; the A's welcome in the white-hot White Sox starting Friday night.