NEW YORK (CBS / AP) — Josh Outman threw another impressive game, Jemile Weeks scored three times and the streaking Oakland Athletics walked their way to a 7-3 victory over the New York Mets on Tuesday night, handing rookie Dillon Gee his first loss of the season.
Ryan Sweeney had four hits, including an RBI single, and the resurgent A’s won their sixth straight game after dropping 13 of 14. It’s their longest winning streak since a seven-game run in September 2009.
Cliff Pennington reached base four times and scored twice, forming a pesky tandem with Weeks at the top of a Punch and Judy lineup. The speedy Weeks walked twice and stole two bases, the latest spark he’s provided since getting called up from the minors June 7.
Outman (3-1) lived up to his pitcher-perfect name, allowing two runs—one earned—and four hits in six innings while wearing white spikes and old-school, dark green stirrups stretched high over his yellow socks.
The 26-year-old left-hander, who missed last season following Tommy John surgery, tossed seven scoreless innings in his previous outing, a 2-1 victory Wednesday night over Kansas City that snapped a stretch of 15 winless outings for Oakland starters and set the team off on its winning streak.
Grant Balfour retired Josh Thole on a bases-loaded grounder to end the eighth, then finished for his second save as the last-place Athletics took the series opener, an interleague rematch of the 1973 World Series.
Reggie Jackson and the A’s won that one in seven games for the second of their three straight titles.
The lone bright spot for the Mets was Jason Bay, who finally showed his old pop at the plate. Bay hit a long homer in the sixth to make it 7-2, his first extra-base hit in 25 games and 89 at-bats — the longest drought of his career.
It was Bay’s first home run since May 13 at Houston, and the former slugger wasn’t done. He added an RBI triple in the eighth that might have cleared the center-field fence if not for a leaping Coco Crisp, who knocked the ball back into play.
Umpires took a look at the replay but upheld the original call.
Normally so poised and polished on the mound, Gee (7-1) was all over the place in a matchup of promising young pitchers. He walked his first two batters, and a single by Crisp loaded the bases.
Hideki Matsui hit a sacrifice fly and Conor Jackson drove in a run with a groundout.
Gee walked Weeks and Pennington again in the third, and two more free passes soon followed. Sweeney’s infield single made it 4-0.
Trying to become the first Mets rookie to win eight straight decisions, Gee walked six in the first three innings. His previous career high for a game was four.
Gee was lifted for a pinch hitter in the fourth after throwing only 45 of 87 pitches for strikes, but D.J. Carrasco also had a hard time hitting the target. He walked home a run in the fifth, and the A’s scored twice to make it 6-1.
Pennington added an RBI single in the sixth.
Oakland, which was coming off a three-game sweep at home of the Bay Area-rival Giants, improved to 7-4 under interim manager Bob Melvin, who took over when Bob Geren was fired June 9.
In the offseason, Melvin interviewed for the Mets’ managerial job that went to Terry Collins.
NOTES: With no designated hitter available in the NL park, Matsui started in the outfield for the first time this season. He made a nice catch in left to end the fifth. … Oakland LF Josh Willingham, who left Friday’s game with a strained Achilles’ tendon, sat out again. Melvin said Matsui will start again Wednesday and then the A’s will see how Willingham is feeling. Willingham leads the team with 10 homers and 42 RBIs. The A’s are last in the majors with 39 home runs. … Oakland RHP Rich Harden, sidelined all season by a strained right shoulder, made his first rehab start for Triple-A Sacramento on Monday night. He struck out six in three hitless innings. … 2B Mark Ellis (strained right hamstring) went 2 for 4 with a double and an RBI for Sacramento in that game and is expected to come off the disabled list Wednesday. … Bay also made a pair of nice plays in left field. … Injured Mets 1B Ike Davis (ankle) is scheduled to be re-evaluated Wednesday and 3B David Wright (back) gets checked out on Thursday.
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