Dana Eveland pitched his second-longest outing of the year to win his second straight decision, Jack Hannahan drove in two runs and the A’s extended their winning streak against the Giants to seven games with a 4-1 victory Friday night.
“We’ve just kind of got their number this year,” Hannahan said.
The streak is Oakland’s longest ever in the Bay Area rivalry, and the A’s also have won 10 of the last 11 and 15 of 19.
“It hasn’t gone well, we know it,” San Francisco skipper Bruce Bochy said. “Some things are hard to explain, but you look at how well they’re pitching: They’re shutting us down and that’s where it all starts—on the mound. They’ve gotten good pitching all year.”
In fact, the A’s ran an advertisement in the San Francisco Chronicle on Friday referring to their dominance in the series. It said: “The battle of the Bay is 100 percent baseball,” but the word battle was crossed out and the ad continued by saying, “Well, when you’ve won eight of the last night it’s not exactly a ‘battle.”’
At least some of the Giants were a little annoyed by the ad.
Randy Winn put San Francisco ahead with an RBI single in the third on a windy and smoky night in Northern California because of nearby fires. But the Giants did little else against Eveland (6-5), who went 7 1-3 innings and allowed one or fewer earned runs for the seventh time in his 16 starts. Brad Ziegler got the final two outs of the eighth and Huston Street pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his 15th save in 18 opportunities.
“I’ve always had a rivalry with the Giants my whole life,” Eveland said. “I grew up a Dodgers fan. I grew up in Southern California and actually liked the Angels more. When they played them, I wasn’t going to root for the Giants, that’s for sure.”
The A’s tied the game in the bottom of the fourth on Hannahan’s RBI single, then took the lead in the sixth against loser Keiichi Yabu (3-4), who failed to retire a batter for the third straight outing. Yabu has given up eight consecutive hits and seven of those baserunners scored.
Bochy’s next move with Yabu might be to pitch him when the game isn’t on the line so he can get back in a groove.
“He’s been doing such a good job but he’s out of sync right now,” Bochy said. “He’s not locating like he was, he’s not mixing up his pitches as well as he was and he’s leaving too many pitches over the plate.”
Hannahan added a sacrifice fly in the decisive inning and Emil Brown and Daric Barton each singled in runs. Carlos Gonzalez hit a pair of doubles and scored twice. Gonzalez, who increased his doubles total to 13 in 25 games, figures the A’s know the Giants so well that it contributes to the success.
“We play really good against them, even in spring training,” Gonzalez said. “I think it’s because we know them really well. That’s baseball—when you have more information you play better.”
Though everybody knows how fast these things can turn. In 2006, Oakland won 15 in a row and 17 of 19 against Seattle only to go 5-14 versus the Mariners last year.
Giants starter Kevin Correia hasn’t won in five starts since April 10 and is 0-2 in three starts since coming off the DL on June 15 after straining a muscle in his left side.
Oakland swept a three-game interleague series in San Francisco from June 13-15 and has back-to-back three-game sweeps in the series.
The Giants landed back home in the Bay Area at 3 a.m. after Thursday night’s game in Cleveland was delayed 1 hour, 42 minutes by rain. Some San Francisco players took batting practice in their own ballpark before the team received a police escort across the bay during busy Friday rush-hour traffic.
Yabu, who pitched in 2005 for Oakland in his only other major league season, showed up at the ballpark at 1 p.m. to catch up with old friends and hang out.
“Lost in translation,” joked teammate Dave Roberts, who is part Japanese himself.
Oakland 3B Eric Chavez sat out with a tender right shoulder after playing DH the previous two games, while OF Ryan Sweeney (sprained ankle) also missed the game. Both were listed as day-to-day but probably won’t play this weekend. … Oakland RHP Joey Devine, on the DL with inflammation in his throwing elbow, threw off the mound for the first time in a month and made 24 pitches. He will do another mound session, then a simulated game before beginning a rehab assignment in the minors. … The A’s released RHP Kiko Calero. … Roberts, recovering from left knee surgery, was scheduled to run the bases Saturday for the first time. And RHP Merkin Valdez—out with a strained throwing elbow—had been slated to play catch from 75 feet as part of his recovery. He was ready to hit the field but the session got pushed back to Saturday because his gear arrived so late on the team bus. LHP starter Jonathan Sanchez also planned a workout in Oakland but he didn’t have his clothes. “This is like the minor leagues,” Sanchez said.