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Orioles 7, Athletics 3

The SportsXchange

OAKLAND, Calif. -- The Baltimore Orioles sure know how spoil a 40th anniversary party.

After the Oakland A's honored their 1973 World Series championship team in a pre-game ceremony and Reggie Jackson threw out the first pitch Saturday, the Orioles took center stage and hammered their way to a 7-3 victory, their third straight win in this four-game series.

Nick Markakis launched a two-run home, and Adam Jones ripped a solo shot in a four-run Orioles rally in the fourth inning. Nate McLouth hit his first home run of the season, a solo shot in a two-run eighth.

Orioles right-hander Chris Tillman held the A's to two runs on seven hits over six innings, earning his first victory while striking out a season-high seven and walking two. He raised his record to 1-1 and lowered his ERA from 5.23 to 4.73.

Closer Jim Johnson came on with no outs and runners on first and second in the ninth. He gave up a single to John Jaso, loading the bases, but got the next three outs for his 31st consecutive save, including 10 this season.

A's right-hander A.J. Griffin lost his second straight start, the longest skid of his young career. He gave up four runs -- all in the fourth -- on five hits over seven innings. He struck out seven and walked two.

A's third baseman Josh Donaldson had four hits, matching his career high set Aug. 17 against Cleveland. Donaldson went 4-for-4 with two doubles and two RBI, raising his average to .318.

The Orioles and A's kept streaking in opposite directions Saturday. The Orioles won their third straight game and eighth in their past 10. The A's lost their fourth straight and eighth in their past nine.

Just as they did Friday night in a 10-2 loss to the Orioles, the A's took an early 2-0 lead and quickly blew it.

Brandon Moss singled and Donaldson doubled him home, giving the A's a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning. Then in the third, Seth Smith lined a one-out single and later scored on Donaldson's single, making it 2-0.

The Orioles answered with four runs in the top of the fourth off Griffin. After Manny Machado worked a leadoff walk, Markakis sent Griffin's 1-2 breaking ball over the right-center wall for a two-run blast, as the Orioles pulled even.

Jones lined an 0-1 fastball over the left-center wall for his first career home run in Oakland, putting the Orioles ahead 3-2 and giving him at least one homer in every American League city.

Griffin walked Chris Davis on four pitches. Then, with one out and Davis running on the pitch, J.J. Hardy lined an RBI single to center, giving Baltimore a 4-2 lead.

Orioles catcher Taylor Teagarden, getting a rare start, suffered a dislocated left thumb in the bottom of the fifth inning and immediately left the game. With Donaldson leading off, Teagarden took a hard foul tip off his thumb. Matt Wieters moved from DH to catcher.

NOTES: The A's had a large turnout of players from their 1973 team for the festivities. Hall of Famers Jackson and Rollie Fingers, Vida Blue, Joe Rudi, Sal Bando, Billy North, Gene Tenace, John "Blue Moon" Odom, Bert Campaneris, Dick Green and Ray Fosse were among those who took part. Fans received a Jackson bobblehead. "It's nice to be here and put my A's shirt on, wear my As' hat," Jackson said. "I wear my A's hat when I play golf. I work for the Yankees and love the Yankees, but the A's are certainly a part of me that goes back forever." ... A's outfielder Yoenis Cespedes (strained muscle, left hand) is expected to be activated from the disabled list Sunday and be in the lineup against Baltimore, manager Bob Melvin said. "Looks good from everything I heard," Melvin said. The A's have gone 4-9 in the 13 games Cespedes has missed. "He takes pressure off everybody. That's what premier players do," Melvin said. "Even when they're not swinging well, the other team knows where he is all the time. They're always aware of him. Everything around him seems to be a little easier. So we look forward to getting him back." ... The Orioles released veteran right-handed reliever Scott Proctor, who had been pitching for Triple-A Norfolk. He allowed seven earned runs and 10 hits over 7 1/3 innings. After pitching last season in Korea, Proctor signed a minor league deal with the San Francisco Giants. The Orioles acquired him in March from the Giants.
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