Parker: 'Things are starting to go our way'
Josh Donaldson homered to lead off the seventh inning, tying the game at one run each. (AP IMAGES)
OAKLAND, Calif. -- No debating this home run by Adam Rosales.
After being denied a game-tying homer last week in Cleveland that Major League Baseball said the umpiring crew should have reversed, Rosales hit a go-ahead shot leading off the eighth inning after Josh Donaldson connected one inning earlier in the Oakland Athletics' 2-1 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Friday night.
"I think I was pretty sure about that one," Rosales said with an ear-to-ear grin. "It felt good to get over that hump. Every ballfield I went to, they all were saying, `Oh, it was a homer,' or you talk to family and friends and like, `Yeah, it was a homer.' So, now they'll be talking about something else. They'll talk about a real homer."
Sean Doolittle (3-0) pitched the eighth for the win in relief of Jarrod Parker to help the reigning AL West champions earn just their third victory in the last 11 games.
Oakland finally got to James Shields (2-4) in the late innings, nearly 10 months after he pitched a three-hit shutout here last July 31 for the Tampa Bay Rays. The right-hander matched his season high with nine strikeouts.
In Oakland's 4-3 loss May 8 in Cleveland, umpire Angel Hernandez and his crew didn't give Rosales the home run in the ninth inning after a video review - MLB executive vice president Joe Torre said an "improper call" was made.
Rosales got over it.
"I didn't really have any sting," he said Friday.
David Lough hit an RBI double hours after his promotion from the minors, and also made a great throw to get Brandon Moss at second as he tried to stretch a leadoff single in the fourth.
Donaldson homered leading off the seventh, tying it at 1. After that drive, Shields struck out the side on called third strikes.
Rosales then sent a 1-1 pitch over the left-field wall in the eighth for his second home run.
"I knew he put a good charge into it," Parker said. "It was a no-doubter. That was a huge pickup for us."
Parker allowed four hits in seven innings, struck out five and walked two in a solid 98-pitch performance. Doolittle yielded Lough's one-out single in the eighth but was aided by an inning-ending double play. Grant Balfour finished with a perfect ninth for his seventh save in seven chances and 25th in a row dating to last season.
Parker's strong outing provided a nice lift for the A's on a day they learned lefty opening day starter Brett Anderson has a stress fracture in his right foot and could miss up to six weeks.
"Parker, just getting him on track, it looked like he was more confident," manager Bob Melvin said. "Hopefully that's a springboard."
Salvador Perez hit a one-out double in the third, and Lough knocked him home two batters later. But the Royals did little else in support of Shields.
After Lorenzo Cain drew a two-out walk in the fourth, Parker retired his next eight batters in order before Cain drew another free pass in the seventh.
"It's a tough loss right there. A real tough loss," Shields said.
Lough batted leadoff and played right field after his promotion from Triple-A Omaha to take the spot of center fielder Jarrod Dyson, placed on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained right ankle.
His two-out double in the third put Kansas City ahead. The Royals lead the majors in batting average with two outs.
The Royals stumbled in the series opener after taking two of three against the Angels in Anaheim following a three-game sweep at home by the New York Yankees.
Shields has had some memorable outings in the Coliseum, most recently that gem last summer for the Rays. That came after he was tagged for a career high-tying 10 runs in four innings - nine in the fourth frame alone - in a 13-4 loss here on July 27, 2011, during his 16-win season.
He has just one win over his last seven starts with three losses and three no-decisions. This marked just the second outing in Shields' first nine that the opponent didn't counter with a former All-Star.
"He pitched great and he competes his heart out," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "It was combination of things tonight. Their pitcher and we couldn't get anything going."
Royals outfielder Jeff Francoeur, who last year had 20 personal pizzas delivered to a small but animated group of A's fans above right field in section 149, stopped by a "Bacon Friday" tailgate outside the ballpark. In 2011, Francoeur tossed a ball wrapped in a $100 bill into the elevated bleacher seats above his outfield spot, instructing fans to use it to buy bacon or beer.
NOTES: Oakland OF Chris Young (strained left quadriceps) was removed from his rehab outing Thursday with Triple-A Sacramento after he experienced some cramping. Back in Oakland a day later, he worked with the strength coach on explosive bursts. He could be ready to return Saturday. "We took him out to be proactive," Melvin said. "If everything goes well today, we'll activate him tomorrow." ... This marked the first of six meetings between the clubs this year. The Royals won the 2012 season series 5-4. ... The Royals used the DL for the first time in season. ... Kansas City's Eric Hosmer ended an 0-for-10 stretch with a second-inning single. He is a .328 career hitter vs. Oakland.