CLEVELAND (AP) – Sean Manaea was on top of his game Wednesday night.
Oakland’s left-hander allowed three hits and struck out nine in seven innings, and the Athletics defeated the Cleveland Indians 3-1.
“Their guys weren’t even getting decent swings off him,” Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. “He made some really good hitters take some really bad swings.”
Manaea (4-3) retired the first 10 hitters before Francisco Lindor homered with one out in the fourth. He gave up singles to Daniel Robertson and Edwin Encarnacion, along with a walk to Jose Ramirez.
“Everything seemed to be working for me,” Manaea said after winning his third straight start. “The big thing was being able to throw my pitches and getting ahead in the count, 0-1 or 0-2. I’m trusting in my stuff.”
Chad Pinder homered twice and drove in all three Oakland runs, as the Athletics snapped a four-game losing streak. The No. 9 hitter belted a solo homer in the third and broke a 1-all tie with a two-run shot in the fifth.
“It was awesome, but even better that we got the win,” Pinder said. “I’m just trying to put good swings on pitches. I’ve just tried to simplify things.”
Mike Clevinger (2-2) gave up both home runs and couldn’t hold the tie after Lindor’s home run. Trevor Plouffe drew a leadoff walk in the fifth before Pinder hit a 2-2 pitch into the bleachers in left field to cap the first multi-homer game of his career.
“The way Manaea was throwing the ball I knew it was going to be a tight race,” Clevinger said. “Any run in this kind of ballgame is going to detrimental.”
Santiago Casilla worked around left fielder Khris Davis’ two-base error in the ninth for his eighth save.
Casilla retired the first two hitters, but Davis turned the wrong way and tripped trying to catch Michael Brantley’s fly ball. Casilla retired Carlos Santana on a fly out to right.
The Athletics struck out 11 times after whiffing 19 times on Tuesday. Oakland’s hitters have struck out 86 times in the last six games.
Cleveland has hit a home run in 16 consecutive games, moving into a tie with Minnesota for the longest streak in the majors this season.
Manaea has won both career starts against Cleveland. He allowed one run in seven innings in a 9-1 victory at Oakland in August. Manaea has also defeated Boston and the New York Yankees in his winning streak.
Clevinger gave up three runs and struck out seven in 6 2/3 innings.
FIRST THINGS FIRST
Melvin has been searching for a solution to Oakland’s lack of production from the leadoff spot, which has batted an AL-worst .159 (34 for 214) this season. Matt Joyce replaced Rajai Davis on Wednesday and was 1 for 4 with a first-inning double.
Ramirez drew a one-out walk in the fifth and took off for second on Austin Jackson’s line drive to left. Ramirez slid into the bag as Davis caught the ball. The relay throw to first resulted in a double play.
“He was straight stealing,” Indians manager Terry Francona said. “He ended up sliding so obviously he didn’t hear the crack of the bat. He was actually a step on third base side (of second) so by then it was too late.”
Athletics: SS Marcus Semien (fractured right wrist) has begun playing catch for first time since undergoing surgery on April 18. Melvin said there is no timetable for his return
Indians: OF Lonnie Chisenhall (concussion) ran the bases Wednesday. He hasn’t played since May 22.
Athletics: RHP Jharel Cotton makes his second start since returning from Triple-A Nashville. He pitched 5 2/3 innings in a 3-2 loss at the Yankees on May 27.
Indians: RHP Corey Kluber will be activated off the 10-day DL to make his first start since May 2. He has been sidelined with a strained lower back.
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