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Chavez throws seven scoreless inning, A's sweep Rangers

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The Canadian Press
4/30/2014 11:17:24 PM
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ARLINGTON, Texas -- Eric Sogard and the Oakland Athletics finished off their answer to a three-game sweep by Texas on the West Coast last week.

Emphatically.

Jesse Chavez allowed one hit in seven scoreless innings, Sogard matched his season total with three RBIs on Wednesday night and the Oakland Athletics completed a sweep in Texas with a 12-1 rout of the sloppy Rangers.

Yoenis Cespedes had two doubles, scored twice and drove in two runs for the A's, who scored 10 runs combined in the third and fourth innings to complete the sweep in a series that started with the teams tied atop the AL West.

"We didn't enjoy them coming in sweeping us and then losing the last two in Houston," Sogard said. "It kind of really made us wake up a little bit. Our pitching was fantastic and we were able to put some runs on the board."

The Rangers matched a season high with four errors, including one of two by shortstop Elvis Andrus on what could have been an inning-ending double play in Oakland's seven-run third.

Chavez (2-0) walked one and struck out eight, allowing only Prince Fielder's soft line-drive single to right-centre field in the first inning. The A's improved to 6-0 in his starts.

"We've seen that game a few times already this year," Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. "Quality stuff all the time. Mechanics are terrific. Keeps guys off balance."

Robbie Ross (1-2) gave up 11 hits and 10 runs in 3 1-3 innings, the shortest outing of the left-hander's first season as a starter. Just six runs were earned because of Andrus' second error in Texas' fourth straight loss.

"It snowballed on me quick," Ross said. "This is one of those games where you want to forget about and move on. That's what everyone tells me."

Alberto Callaspo and Derek Norris had three hits each among a season-high 17 for Oakland. Two of Norris' hits were infield singles on choppers to Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre and played big roles in Oakland building a quick 10-0 lead.

The burly catcher hustled to beat Beltre's throw for the fifth straight Oakland hit in the third. Two runs scored on the next one an inning later. Craig Gentry came home as Beltre's throw skipped past Fielder, and right fielder Alex Rios got the second error on the play when his throw to try to get Cespedes at home went to the backstop.

Andrus, who went 0 for 2 before coming out after five innings and has one hit in his past 28 at-bats, had his other error in the first inning when Josh Donaldson's routine grounder jumped up and hit his hand and the throw went several feet over Fielder's head.

"There's going to be times either defence or offence are not on the same level," Andrus said. "Today was both."

Cespedes had a two-run double for a 3-0 Oakland lead in the third before the first of Norris' infield hits. Callaspo followed with an easy grounder to Andrus, but the ball went between his legs into centre field.

Sogard later made it 7-0 with a two-run single and added an RBI single in the fourth as Oakland outscored Texas 25-4 in the three games.

"It seems like there was carry-over every game," Melvin said. "The quality of our at-bats throughout the whole lineup. Everybody contributed. That's when we're at our best."

Coco Crisp hit his third homer of the season, a solo shot to right field in the sixth for a 12-0 lead. It was the only homer of the series in a ballpark that's never had a three-game set without at least one home run.

Texas ended the shutout in the eighth when Josh Wilson's double off reliever Luke Gregerson scored Leonys Martin.

NOTES: A's RHP A.J. Griffin had elbow-ligament replacement surgery in Houston on Wednesday, becoming the second Oakland starter lost to the season-ending procedure this year. Jarrod Parker underwent the same surgery before the season. ... Rangers manager Ron Washington said Shin-Soo Choo would return to LF on Friday at the Los Angeles Angels. Choo was DH for the second straight game after being out of the starting lineup for a week with a sprained left ankle. ... Josh Reddick walked in the third to snap Ross' streak of 21 1-3 innings without a walk.

Jesse Chavez (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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