ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -The downtrodden
finally won a series for the first time in over a month, and they did it against the team that's running away with the AL
homered and drove in three runs,
had a career-high four hits and the Athletics beat the
Los Angeles Angels
6-5 Wednesday night.
''If you're not winning any series, you're losing a good amount of games. So the goal going into every series is to try to
win it,'' shortstop
said. ''And to come in here and take a series from one of the best teams in baseball is a good confidence booster for us.''
The A's took two of three and snapped a drought of 12 winless series going back to July 7-10, when they captured three of
four from Seattle.
The A's still trail Los Angeles by 19 1/2 games, however.
''Anytime you're playing the Angels, it's a rivalry and it's a lot of fun. But it's not fun when it doesn't mean as much as
it could,'' Oakland left fielder
said. ''We started off really well and just kind of hit the wall for the second year in a row. It's definitely disappointing.
We just want to finish up strong and have something positive to take into next year.''
The Angels haven't won any of their last five series since sweeping the Yankees at home. They have a 15-game lead on the
, who come to Anaheim on Thursday night to begin a four-game set.
(4-5) retired all five batters he faced after coming on in the sixth and striking out
with two men on.
, who replaced Street as the Athletics' closer, got five outs for his sixth save. The sidearming right-hander ended it by
to ground into a double play with runners at first and second after walking
''I just try to get as many ground balls as I can,'' Ziegler said. ''I felt like it wouldn't hurt by putting Quinlan on first
because it set up a double play. I mean, obviously I didn't want to walk him. I was trying to go after him and just left pitches
out of the zone, but it worked out.''
Staked to a 6-0 lead through two innings in his in his fifth big league start, Oakland left-hander
failed to retire a batter in the fourth as the Angels made a game of it with a four-run rally.
Gonzalez, who escaped a one-out bases-loaded jam in the second after walking three batters, hit Quinlan with a pitch to load
them again in the fourth with none out.
chased Gonzalez with a two-run single, Quinlan scored on a fielder's choice grounder by Gary Matthews Jr., and
's RBI single against
made it 6-4.
Angels second baseman
came out after feeling tightness in his left hamstring advancing to second on Teixeira's hit.
replaced him and struck out with two runners in scoring position in the fifth, after Aybar's RBI single trimmed Oakland's
lead to 6-5.
''Being down 6-0 definitely is tough,'' said manager
, whose team hasn't won a game in which they've trailed by more than four runs. ''We battled to get back in that ballgame,
but Oakland's got some guys in the back of their pen that are throwing the ball well and they got it done. We just had a little
bit too far to come back from.''
(14-7) had his second rough outing in a row, throwing 49 pitches over 1 1-3 innings and allowing six runs on eight hits.
Davis opened the game by beating out a single to Kendrick after his one-hopper to the right side of the mound deflected off
Saunders' bare hand. Scioscia and trainer Ned Bergert went out to check on him and decided to let Saunders stay in after a
couple of warmup pitches.
''It was just a reaction by Joe,'' Scioscia said. ''Fortunately, it just kind of glanced off his finger and didn't catch it
flush. It could have been ugly.''
Scioscia and Saunders both insisted that had nothing to do with what transpired from there. Davis stole second and scored
on Brown's single before the A's blew it open with a five-run second inning.
singled home a run, Crosby added a two-run double and Brown chased Saunders with a two-run homer to left-center, his 13th.
Saunders, who gave up six runs over 5 1-3 innings in last Friday's 9-0 loss to Minnesota, is 5-3 with a 4.72 ERA in nine starts
this season when pitching on four days rest - and 7-4 with a 3.49 ERA in 12 starts on five days' rest.
''What affected me was not being able to throw strikes and get ahead of guys,'' said Saunders, who beat the A's 2-0 with eight
innings of four-hit ball on April 29 in Anaheim. ''I've just been struggling lately.''
Notes: Scioscia was ejected by plate umpire
while making a pitching change in the seventh inning after
issued a leadoff walk to
. ... Angels 3B and leadoff hitter
did not play because of irritation in his left big toe.