A's overcome milestone moment, sweep Boston

A's overcome milestone moment, sweep Boston
July 5, 2012, 12:29 am
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OAKLAND -- A 175M payroll, and a home run of historic proportion couldn't derail the A's. They conquered the visiting Red Sox with a three-game sweep, winning 3-2 on Wednesday. The A's have now won four straight games and are just one game below .500. "They're a tough team, but more importantly I like the way we are playing," third baseman Brandon Inge said. "We're a team that can hang with anyone, it's just a matter of putting it all together." The A's hadn't swept the Red Sox since the 2008 season. They are 19-12 over their past 31 games. As they inch closer to the .500 mark, A's manager Bob Melvin wants the team to stay in the moment."If .500 is what you want to do, then you are going to stall out at that point," Melvin said. "I really think that what we are trying to do is just win games and count them up at the end." The aforementioned historical home run belonged to Red Sox slugger David Ortiz. He blasted his 400th career homer in the fourth inning. It was a game-tying blast off A's rookie starting pitcher A.J. Griffin. "It didn't seem to affect him too much," Melvin said of Griffin. "Maybe he is proud of that. He is in the record books now."Griffin only allowed two runs -- one of which was unearned. The second run scored after an odd sequence of events. In Ortiz' plate appearance following the milestone home run, public address announcer Dick Callahan acknowledged his achievement to the announced crowd of 28,240. Ortiz received a standing ovation, tipping his cap in response. Griffin had to stand on the mound and try and ignore the scene. "I was totally trying not to even think about it. Then I walked him, that was cool." Griffin said sarcastically. "You've got to tip your hat to that guy. He is a great hitter. He deserved that, it's a big milestone right there. I guess my name will be next to that one."After Griffin walked Ortiz, Jemile Weeks made an error on a ground ball hit by Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The next batter, Adrian Gonzalez, drove in Ortiz to give the Red Sox a 2-1 lead.The accomplishment for Ortiz might have been overshadowed by the actions of a former Boston player -- Brandon Moss. He went 3-for-4 with his 10th homer of the season. He ended the day a triple shy of the cycle. Moss' 10 home runs in 24 games played are second-most in A's history behind Dave Kingman, who hit 11 in 24 games in 1984. "He amazes me every day," Inge said of Moss. "That guy has unbelievable power. Every time he swings the bat our whole dugout jumps back in amazement." Moss, who was drafted in 2002 by Boston, drove in five runs in this series. Other former Red Sox were big contributors in this series as well. Josh Reddick drove in two runs, and so did Coco Crisp. Nine of the 12 RBIs in the series came off the bats of former Boston players now with the A's. Two of those former Red Sox players also scored runs on Wednesday. Crisp hit a leadoff triple in the seventh inning and scored the go-ahead run on an RBI single by Weeks. And Inge drove in Moss with a game-tying hit in the sixth inning. "There's always that additional incentive to try and beat the team that traded you away," Bob Melvin said. He added that A's pitching coach Curt Young, who was let go by the Red Sox in the offseason, can also take pride in this series. A's starting pitchers have allowed two earned runs or fewer in 18 of their last 20 games. Boston was held to just five runs in this series. The A's get a much needed day off after playing 16 days in a row. They will hope to pick up where they left off on Friday at the Coliseum against the Seattle Mariners.