A day after losing on a couple home runs from the Bronx Bombers, the Oakland Athletics used the long ball to their advantage, with Luke Montz, Yoenis Cespedes and Josh Donaldson all going deep Sunday to give the A’s a 5-4 win over the New York Yankees.
Dan Straily was on point in his third start of the season, and the A’s looked sharp at the plate against Andy Pettitte, making contact early and showing some power in a hitter’s ballpark as they took two of three in New York.
The A’s had a few opportunities that they couldn’t capitalize on in the first two frames, loading the bases in the first and stranding Montz on base after a double in the second. Oakland put one run on the scoreboard in the third inning when Robinson Cano overthrew first base going for the double play off of a ground ball from Cespedes, allowing Derek Norris to score from second. The Yankees would respond in the bottom of the inning with an RBI single from Cano to even it up at 1-1.
Montz gave the A’s the lead with a solo shot to left field in the top of the fourth, and Cespedes made it 4-1 on a two-run homer in the top of the fifth, his fifth of the season, this one coming with his family in the stands at Yankee Stadium.
Straily was in command, throwing 85 pitches with 60 of them called for strikes. He’d finish the day four strikeouts, three walks and only four hits allowed, but he left two men on for Jerry Blevins when he left the game with one out in the bottom of the sixth, and the Yankees took advantage, tying the game with an RBI double from Ichiro Suzuki and a two-run single by Lyle Overbay before Blevins could get out of the inning.
From there it was a battle of the bullpens, and after little success against Preston Claiborne, the A’s would break through against left-hander Boone Logan courtesy of a towering home run to the upper deck in left field by Josh Donaldson in the eighth.
Ryan Cook got out of a jam in the bottom of the inning after allowing Travis Hafner and Suzuki to get on board, and Grant Balfour recorded his 23rd consecutive save, striking out Vernon Wells to give the A’s the series victory after putting two men on with two outs in the ninth.
The A’s are now 18-14 as they head to Cleveland to take on the Indians in a four-game series. Jarrod Parker will take the mound against Ubaldo Jimenez Monday night at 4:05 PST.