OAKLAND (CBS/AP) – Jered Weaver went seven innings for his career-best 17th win, Mark Trumbo hit a tiebreaking homer in the sixth and the Los Angeles Angels beat the Oakland Athletics 4-1 on Wednesday.
Bobby Abreu added two hits and scored twice for the Angels, who began the day three games behind first-place Texas in the AL West. The Rangers were scheduled to host Cleveland at night.
Josh Willingham matched his career high of 26 home runs with a solo shot off Weaver in the third but the A’s managed only two baserunners over the final six innings.
Weaver (17-7) allowed six hits with one walk and two strikeouts. He pitched out of a bases-loaded situation in the first and escaped a two-on, one-out jam in the second to beat the A’s for the third time in four starts this season.
That lowered the lanky right-hander’s ERA to 2.40, second in the AL behind Detroit ace Justin Verlander (2.36). Weaver also improved to 13-0 this year when going at least seven innings.
That’s been big for the Angels, who are 21-10 in games Weaver starts and 61-57 otherwise.
It was also marked Los Angeles’ second straight win in Oakland after losing 10 of its previous 12 at the Coliseum.
Scott Downs pitched a scoreless eighth and Jordan Walden worked the ninth for his 31st save, extending his Angels rookie record.
The A’s, who still lead the season series 9-7, had Weaver in trouble early but couldn’t deliver with runners on base and lost for the sixth time in nine games.
Oakland, which committed two errors to add to its AL-leading total of 119, has been held to one run or fewer 30 times this season.
Willingham drove in the A’s only run when he hit a 2-2 pitch over the wall in left-center. That tied his career high set in 2006 with Florida.
Oakland’s defense made several nice plays to help preserve the 1-0 lead until Los Angeles broke through in the sixth.
Howie Kendrick, who hit a pair of two-run homers in Tuesday’s 6-3 win, drew a leadoff walk and scored from first on Abreu’s double to right-center. Two batters later, Trumbo hit his 26th home run of the season to make it 3-1.
Rich Harden (4-3) didn’t make it out of the sixth, allowing three runs and seven hits. Since throwing seven scoreless innings against Toronto on Aug. 19, the Oakland right-hander is winless in four starts and has a 6.97 ERA during that span.
Trumbo also hit a hard single off the wall in the eighth. He needs three home runs over the final 13 games to become the second rookie in Angels history to have at least 30 home runs and 80 RBIs. Tim Salmon had 31 home runs and 95 RBIs in 1993.
Abreu, who led off the eighth with a walk, scored an insurance run when Trumbo stole second base and Oakland infielder Eric Sogard bobbled the throw from catcher Kurt Suzuki.
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