OAKLAND -- How do you stop a team that hasn't been shutout all season long? Fastballs. Two-seam fastballs, to be exact. At 39, Bartolo Colon came one inning shy of being the third-oldest pitcher to throw a shutout for the A's. He did however throw eight shutout innings, as the A's defeated the Rangers 2-0. It was Colon's fifth win of the season, and his first in Oakland. Colon allowed five hits and only walked one batter. He has now walked one batter or fewer in nine of his last 13 starts."There is rhythm and flow to a game, and he really dictated that tonight," Melvin said. "I'm always in rhythms like that, and trying to go fast," Colon said through interpreter Ariel Prieto. "I feel so happy how I pitched tonight."OK, so fastballs, and speed. That was the A's recipe for success. Wednesday's game at the Oakland Coliseum was the fastest American League game this season. It was just two hours and four minutes long. "The faster that we can get back to offense and get back to swinging, it gets you into more of a rhythm," Brandon Inge said. "He did a great job. It's fun to play behind guys like that. I've seen it for many years from him. I'm glad I'm on his team now."The only trouble Colon got in came in the second inning. He loaded the based before inducing an inning-ending double play. He ended up retiring the final 11 batters he faced. Colon has won 18 games against the Rangers in his career. He couldn't have done it with out some offense though. The A's scored twice on Rangers starting pitcher Colby Lewis, who threw a complete game. He is now 5-2 with a 2.56 ERA while pitching in Oakland. The A's made him pay for his two biggest mistakes -- a second-inning double to Yoenis Cespedes and a fourth-inning double by Josh Reddick. Each scored. Cespedes finished the night 3-for-3, a homer shy of the cycle."Right now when people say to me I needed a home run for the cycle I know," Cespedes said through Spanish language reporter Manolo Hernandez-Douen. "During the game I am trying to make a good swing and look for good contact." Cespedes looked comfortable defensively in left field. In the third inning, he made a sliding catch to rob Josh Hamilton. He ranged all the way to the foul line, which was a far run because the A's had an overshift on against Hamilton. After making the catch, he popped up to his feet and waved his arms in celebration.
"It was amazing how far he went to get that ball," Melvin said. "I didn't realize it was on his leg for a minute...When the ball was hit I didn't think he had a chance to get there. He closed the gap pretty quickly."Brian Fuentes pitched the ninth inning for the save. He faced the heart of the Rangers lineup, striking out Hamilton swinging for the second out. He is now 5 for 7 in save opportunities. "It takes a lot of poise and guts to get through that ninth," Melvin said. "There's a little bit more pressure on you knowing that the starter pitched a good game, and you have to close it out against that lineup."Notes: Brandon Moss made his A's debut Wednesday night, going 0-for-3. He picked a few balls at first, bailing out Inge. As a result he was the recipient of a unique award."I gave him a big man hug," Inge said. "That's impressive enough for me." "He did, he tested me," Moss said. "You do your best to pick those and try to make something out of it."