The Athletics seek a fourth straight win overall and a six-game run against the Indians on Tuesday night.
After dropping eight of its first 13 games this month, Oakland (70-57) has won nine of 11 since, including three straight. The Athletics are 4-0 against Cleveland in that stretch, taking Monday's series opener 3-0 for their second consecutive shutout in the series.
Cleveland (55-73), which is scoreless in 36 of its last 39 innings, isn't the first opponent to be on the other end of a solid pitching performance by Oakland, which has the AL's second-lowest ERA (3.46). The Athletics have a 2.66 ERA over the last 11 games, with the number slightly skewed by a 7-2 loss to Minnesota on Aug. 20.
Oakland, a major league-best 33-15 since the start of July, is tied with Baltimore for the first AL wild-card spot and one-half game ahead of Tampa Bay for the second.
The Indians, meanwhile, have lost 11 of 12 and are averaging 2.5 runs and batting .214 in those games. They have struck out at least 10 times in three of the last four, with the top three batters in their order Monday going 0 for 11 with five strikeouts.
"This is frustrating," third baseman Jason Donald told Cleveland's official website. "It's not enjoyable losing ballgames like this, especially when you feel like you have a chance to win it. It just seems like it keeps piling on right now."
Shin-Soo Choo is 0 for his last 13 while Asdrubal Cabrera , in a 3-for-31 (.097) slump, got a day off Monday.
Oakland hasn't won six straight in a single season against Cleveland since 1998, when it posted an eight-game streak in the series.
The Athletics will try to move 14 games over .500 for the first time since they finished the 2006 season 93-69 with Tommy Milone (10-9, 3.87 ERA) on the mound.
Milone earned his first win in more than a month after limiting Minnesota to one run and two hits over eight innings of a 5-1 victory last Wednesday.
The left-hander, who was winless in his five previous starts, had a 7.50 ERA over the four prior outings.
"That's about par for what he's done at home through the season," manager Bob Melvin said. "It was a great outing, a nice recovery."
Milone surrendered four runs and seven hits over five innings against the Indians on Aug. 17 before leaving without a decision in a 6-4 win.
Zach McAllister (5-4, 3.50) opposed Milone in that start and also didn't receive a decision after allowing four runs and eight hits in six innings.
The right-hander is 3-2 with a 3.21 ERA at home this year. He hasn't given up more than three earned runs in any of his nine starts at Progressive Field.
|August 18, 2012||Jordan Norberto||15-Day DL||Left shoulder tendinitis|
|August 12, 2012||Brandon Inge||15-Day DL||Dislocated right shoulder|
|August 12, 2012||Brandon Inge||Day-to-Day||Dislocated right shoulder|
|August 07, 2012||Eric Sogard||15-Day DL||Strained back|
|August 05, 2012||A.J. Griffin||15-Day DL||Strained right shoulder|
|August 04, 2012||A.J. Griffin||Day-to-Day||Sore right shoulder|
|August 27, 2012||Roberto Hernandez||Day-to-Day||Left game - sprained right ankle|
|August 13, 2012||Josh Tomlin||15-Day DL||Right elbow inflammation|
|August 13, 2012||Jason Kipnis||Day-to-Day||Stiff neck|
|August 06, 2012||Travis Hafner||15-Day DL||Lower back inflammation|
|August 06, 2012||Travis Hafner||Day-to-Day||Back soreness|
|June 30, 2012||Lonnie Chisenhall||60-Day DL||Fractured right ulna - out 4-6 weeks|
CLEVELAND (AP) -- Tommy Milone and the entire Oakland pitching staff have plenty of nothing as far as the Cleveland Indians are concerned.
The Athletics continued to pile up zeroes as Milone and three relievers shut out Cleveland for the third straight time, beating the Indians 7-0 on Tuesday night.
"Just par for the course. Our guys are unbelievable," said Oakland's Brandon Moss , who homered and drove in three runs as the Athletics won their fourth straight to remain tied with Baltimore for the AL wild-card lead.
Moss and Chris Carter homered off Zach McAllister (5-5) as Oakland moved to 5-0 this month against Cleveland with its 10th win in 12 games since dropping eight of 13.
"Another strong pitching performance and you can always live with that," Athletics manager Bob Melvin said.
Milone (11-9) worked six innings. Jerry Blevins , Pat Neshek and Evan Scribner completed the eight-hitter.
Oakland is 14 games over .500 (71-57) for the first time since finishing 2006 at 93-69 and has the best overall record since the start of July at 34-15.
The Indians have lost 12 of 13, are 5-25 since July 27, and scoreless in 45 of their last 48 innings overall.
"A loss is a loss," Indians manager Manny Acta said. "Every single one of them hurts. We couldn't execute at all."
Oakland has outscored the Indians 17-0 in their last three meetings. It started with a 7-0 home win Aug. 19 behind Jarrod Parker 's eight strong innings. Brett Anderson worked seven innings in a 3-0 win on Monday.
"I think it is more about us being in a good stretch," Melvin said. "They have a lot of guys in their lineup that get your attention."
It is the first time in 23 years that Cleveland has been blanked three straight times by a team. Oakland did it in June 1989.
Cleveland's offensive futility was on full display in the fourth, when the Indians put runners on second and third with no outs. Milone struck out Casey Kotchman and Jason Donald . Third baseman Josh Donaldson then made a barehanded scoop and throw on a slow roller to retire Jason Kipnis at first to keep the shutout intact.
"Tommy did his best work with runners on base that inning," Melvin said.
"I didn't have my best stuff, but was able to get through it," the left-hander said. "They got those guys on, I took a deep breath and was able to make some pitches. You do that, it puts a fire under you."
McAllister struck out the side in the first, then yielded four singles to fall behind 2-0 in the second. Moss had Oakland's third straight hit to make it 1-0. Adam Rosales added a two-out RBI single.
Moss made it 4-0 in the third by hitting a 3-2 pitch for his 14th homer. It came one out after Seth Smith doubled.
Carter homered to open the fifth for a 5-0 lead. It was his 12th homer in 46 games since being recalled from the minors.
"They've done a tremendous job since coming up at almost the same time," Milone said of the duo who often share time at first base. Moss played left field in place of Coco Crisp , who fouled a ball off his right foot Monday.
Carter had an RBI double in the ninth off reliever Joe Smith , who allowed another run on a wild pitch.
McAllister struck out a career-high eight over only 4 1-3 innings. The right-hander gave up nine hits and five runs to drop to 1-3 in six starts in August. He had not allowed more than three earned runs in any of his previous nine starts at Progressive Field.
Indians reliever Esmil Rogers struck out the side in the eighth and Carlos Santana dropped each third strike, throwing to first baseman Kotchman for the putout. Santana also had to throw to first to complete two of McAllister's strikeouts.
NOTES: Oakland has won six straight from Cleveland for the first time since taking eight in a row from the Indians in 1998. ... One day after leaving a start with a sprained ankle, Indians RHP Roberto Hernandez threw in the outfield. The Indians still are not sure if Hernandez will miss his next scheduled start. ... X-rays on Crisp's foot were negative and he is day-to-day. ... Melvin moved SS Stephen Drew from second to Crisp's leadoff spot and RF Josh Reddick from sixth to second while Yoenis Cespedes shifted from left field to center. ... Oakland RHP A.J. Griffin (shoulder) allowed one run in five innings in his second rehab start for Triple-A Sacramento on Monday. ... Indians RF Shin-Soo Choo broke an 0-for-13 slide with a third-inning single. ... Indians SS Asdrubal Cabrera singled in the seventh and is in a 4-for-35 (.114) slump.