By DICK SCANLON
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) Brandon Moss hit a solo homer for Oakland’s only hit and the Athletics took advantage of the sloppy Tampa Bay Rays for a 3-2 victory Wednesday night.
Oakland scored twice on two errors and a pair of walks in the second inning, helping the A’s win for the first time since at least 1914 while getting only one hit, according to the team.
Moss hit his 10th home run – and 11th extra-base hit in seven games – off Erik Bedard in the fourth inning. Oakland’s fifth straight victory, coupled with Detroit’s earlier Wednesday, gave the A’s the best record in the major leagues at 30-16.
Tommy Milone (2-3) gave up two runs in 5 2-3 innings for the A’s, who have won 11 of 12.
Bedard (2-2) pitched 5 1-3 innings for the Rays. Four Rays relievers finished the one-hitter.
The homer by Moss was the first off Bedard since Sept. 16, 2013, breaking a homerless streak of 49 1-3 innings. Bedard struck out six, and the earned run he allowed was only the third in his last five starts.
Throwing errors by Rays shortstop Yunel Escobar and second baseman Sean Rodriguez and two walks in the second inning helped the A’s score their first two runs off Bedard.
After Moss’ sixth homer in 16 games made it 3-0, singles by Wil Myers, James Loney and Escobar produced two runs for Tampa Bay in the sixth and chased Milone.
The Rays, who have lost four straight, loaded the bases with one out in the eighth, but reliever Fernando Abad got Escobar to hit into a double play.
Sean Doolittle pitched the ninth for his fourth .
Logan Forsythe was credited with a hit off Doolittle when his infield popup caromed off a Tropicana Field catwalk and landed near the pitcher’s mound. The umpires ruled the ball had struck the catwalk in fair territory.
NOTES: The Rays will activated RHP Alex Cobb (strained left oblique) from the 15-day disabled list Thursday to pitch against Oakland RHP Sonny Gray (5-1). Cobb (1-1) went on the 15-day disabled list April 13. … Tampa Bay RHP Jeremy Hellickson, coming back from arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow in January, will throw batting practice for the first time Thursday. He hopes to be back before the All-Star break. … A’s Bob Melvin said he is hopeful SS Jed Lowrie will play Thursday after missing two games with a strained neck. … RHP Ryan Cook (right forearm strain) might pitch a bullpen session when the A’s return home next week. … LHP Eric O’Flaherty (Tommy John surgery) will throw one inning in a sim game at extended spring training Saturday. He is eligible to come off the disabled list May 29.
Updated May 22, 2014