Mark Redman was one of Oakland’s most reliable starters through the first three months of the season. He has been consistently bad for the better part of the last six weeks.
The veteran left-hander will try to recapture his early season form when the AL West-leading Athletics open a three-game series with the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards.
Redman, signed as a free agent this past offseason after helping the Florida Marlins to the World Series title last year, was 6-3 with a 3.83 ERA on June 23, having yielded three runs or fewer in all but four of his first 14 starts for Oakland.
However, Redman has since fallen on hard times, going 2-6 over his last nine starts while allowing at least four runs on six occasions. He was beaten up for six runs and seven hits over only four innings in Wednesday’s 11-3 loss to Detroit, as his ERA inflated to 4.56.
“I always try to get groundballs, but if I get the ball up a bit it becomes a fly ball,” Redman said. “Today it didn’t go my way. The balls were falling quite nicely for them.”
Redman, who has a 6.37 ERA in 11 home starts this season, has pitched much better away from Network Associates Coliseum, going 5-5 with a 3.24 ERA in 12 outings.
In each of his last three road outings, Redman has yielded two earned runs or fewer over at least seven innings.
With Sunday’s 6-1 loss to Kansas City, the A’s had their lead in the West trimmed to just a half-game over Anaheim and Texas. Eric Byrnes’ RBI single provided the only offense for Oakland, which finished 2-4 on its homestand. It was Oakland’s first losing homestand against more than one team since May 7-12, 2002.
The Orioles won their fourth straight series by taking three of four from Toronto, including Sunday’s come-from-behind 11-7 victory. David Newhan matched a career high with four hits and Melvin Mora drove in three runs as Baltimore overcame a six-run deficit to win for the 11th time in its last 13 overall.
The Orioles, who are opening a six-game homestand, have won eight in a row in Baltimore.
“We never think we’re out of the game,” Mora said.
Baltimore shortstop Miguel Tejada, who spent his first seven seasons in Oakland, earning AL MVP honors in 2002, will be making his first appearance against his former team. Tejada signed with the Orioles as a free agent this past offseason.
Tejada will make his return to Oakland next week when the teams play a four-game series.