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A's 9, Nationals 1

The SportsXchange

OAKLAND, Calif. -- Catcher Derek Norris hit a pair of three-run homers, left-hander Scott Kazmir threw seven shutout innings and the Oakland A's routed the Washington Nationals 9-1 on Sunday to sweep their three-game series and ruin pitcher Gio Gonzalez's homecoming.

Washington traded Norris to Oakland in December 2011 as part of a package for Gonzalez, who faced his former team for the first time Sunday.

Norris hit a three-run home run in the first inning off Gonzalez and a three-run homer in the second, both blasts coming on 3-0 pitches. Norris had the first two-homer game of his career, sending Gonzalez fastballs over the left-field fence both times at the Coliseum.

Kazmir (5-1) allowed just four hits, struck out four and walked none. He bounced back from his lone loss of the season, a 4-2 defeat Monday against Seattle when he gave up four runs and eight hits over six innings.

Gonzalez (3-3) lasted only 4 1/3 innings against the A's, allowing a season-high seven runs on nine hits, which matched his season high. He struck out four, walked three and threw 88 pitches, just 48 for strikes.

The A's won their fourth straight game and completed their fourth series sweep of the season, the most in the major leagues, before a Mother's Day crowd of 28,205.

Norris entered the game batting .378 overall and .487 over his previous 15 contests and proceeded to stay hot, going 2-for-4 and driving in a career-high six runs.

Oakland scored four runs in the first inning after Gonzalez retired the first two batters he faced. Third baseman Josh Donaldson walked and went to second when left fielder Yoenis Cespedes beat out an infield single. Then Gonzalez fell behind Norris and piped a 90 mph fastball that Norris launched for his third home run of the season.

Designated hitter Alberto Callaspo followed with an infield single, moved to second on first baseman Brandon Moss' single and scored on second baseman Nick Punto's single, making it 4-0.

Norris came to bat again in the second with center fielder Craig Gentry on third after a leadoff single and Cespedes on first with a two-out walk. Once again, Gonzalez fell behind 3-0. Once again, Norris got the green light and ripped a fastball over the left-field fence, putting the A's ahead 7-0.

Norris came to the plate again in the fifth inning, leading off against Gonzalez. He worked a 3-0 count again, but this time Gonzalez walked him with a pitch in the dirt.

Norris and catcher John Jaso have been platooning, with Jaso usually starting against right-handed pitchers and Norris against lefties. Jaso hit a walkoff double and a solo home run Saturday night in the A's 4-3, 10-inning victory. Norris answered with his two three-run blasts.

Oakland added two runs in the seventh inning off left-hander Jerry Blevins, who faced the A's for the first time since they traded him to Washington on Dec. 11.

NOTES: Nationals 1B Adam LaRoche (strained right quad) was placed on the 15-day disabled list Sunday. The Nationals decided to make that move after getting results of an MRI that LaRoche had Saturday. He had been playing with a sore quad for over two weeks. ... Nationals 1B Tyler Moore was recalled Sunday from Triple-A Syracuse, replacing LaRoche on the 25-man roster. Moore was in the starting lineup Sunday. ... Oakland CF Coco Crisp (strained neck) missed his fourth straight game and remained day-to-day.
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