Athletics defeat Cardinals to avoid three-game sweep

Apr 17, 2024, 3:39 PM | Updated: 10:25 pm

Manager Mark Kotsay #7 of the Oakland Athletics takes the ball from pitcher Paul Blackburn taking B...

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 17: Manager Mark Kotsay #7 of the Oakland Athletics takes the ball from pitcher Paul Blackburn taking Blackburn out of the game against the St. Louis Cardinals in the top of the six inning on April 17, 2024 at the Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Paul Blackburn remained unbeaten with a fourth straight effective start, Shea Langeliers contributed a ground-rule double to a three-run fifth inning and the Oakland Athletics salvaged one win in their three-game series against the visiting St. Louis Cardinals with a 6-3 triumph Wednesday afternoon.

Esteury Ruiz smacked his second homer in three games and Tyler Nevin had three hits as the A’s capped a 3-3 homestand with their third-most runs this season.

Willson Contreras had two doubles and Ivan Herrera drove in two runs for the Cardinals, who completed a 3-3 trip.

Blackburn (2-0), who had not allowed a run in his previous three starts, allowed three in a Cardinals fourth-inning uprising that propelled the visitors into a 3-2 lead. Contreras had an RBI double and Herrera a two-run single in the rally.

But Blackburn allowed just one more hit and no more runs before being pulled after 5 2/3 innings, charged with three runs on six hits. He walked five and struck out seven.

T.J. McFarland protected a 5-3 lead by getting the final out of the sixth, before Austin Adams, Lucas Erceg and Mason Miller combined for three scoreless innings. Miller recorded his fourth save with a two-strikeout ninth.

Down 3-2, the A’s regained the lead in the fifth after Nevin and Zack Gelof opened the inning with singles against Cardinals starter Steven Matz (1-1).

Langeliers followed with his double to left-center, tying the score, before Abraham Toro (groundout) and Darell Hernaiz (sacrifice fly) plated additional runs.

The A’s added an insurance run in the sixth when Ruiz, who had reached base on a fielder’s choice, stole second and scored on Nevin’s single.

Ruiz, who was promoted from Triple-A on Monday, homered to open the scoring in the third after Max Schuemann had worked Matz for an inning-opening walk.

Matz went five innings, allowing five runs and seven hits. He walked three and struck out four.

Ruiz finished with two runs and two RBIs for the A’s, who outhit the Cardinals 10-6.

Contreras’ doubles were the only extra-base hits for St. Louis, which failed to homer in the three-game series.

–Field Level Media



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