SEATTLE (AP) — The Seattle Mariners are witness to the formula for winning baseball: Good pitching, along with home runs with guys on base.
It's a simple formula, but unfortunately for the Mariners, they were not in the mix. That was the way the Oakland Athletics managed to win all three weekend games, including Sunday's 4-2 decision.
Tommy Milone worked six strong innings, Jonny Gomes hit a three-run homer and the A's never let the Mariners threaten.
It was the same way in the first two games, both 6-1 victories. A's starters A.J. Griffin and Brett Anderson quieted the Mariners bats while George Kottaras hit a three-run homer in the opener and a two-run homer in the second.
"We ran into a hot team and sometimes that's the way it goes. We've been in the games, we've gotten the runners in scoring position, we've gotten runners on base. We've missed those key hits," said Michael Saunders, who had an RBI triple.
"Oakland typically runs out good pitching year in and year out. When you run into a good pitcher that is locating the ball well and mixing, you have some trouble hitting those guys."
Milone (12-10) allowed eight hits and two runs, matched a career high with 10 strikeouts and had no walks.
He has walked one or no batters in each of his past 14 starts. That ties the longest streak by a starter in Oakland history. Gil Heredia also had 14 starts with one walk or less in 1999.
During his stretch, Milone has issued just eight walks and struck out 78 in 88 innings.
His 12 wins also ties the Oakland rookie record set by Chris Codiroli in 1983 and matched by Joe Blanton in 2005.
"I've always been a strike-thrower," Milone said. "I feel like nothing good comes from putting guys on base with a free pass. That's probably the reason why I give up so many hits."
Grant Balfour worked the ninth to pick up his 16th save in 18 opportunities.