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Orioles cruise to rare rout in Oakland

The SportsXchange

OAKLAND, Calif. -- The Baltimore Orioles had lost 16 of their past 19 games at the O.co Coliseum before kicking off a four-game series Thursday night against the Oakland A's.

So much for historical trends.

Jason Hammel pitched six strong innings, Chris Davis blasted his eighth home run, and the Orioles routed the A's 10-2 in an early-season matchup between two of baseball's most surprising teams of 2012.

Coming off a 6-3 homestand, the Orioles ripped 15 hits as they opened an 11-game, three-city, West Coast road trip.

"It's tough to win out here for some reason, when you come West and things like that," Orioles left fielder Nate McLouth said. "But Hammel pitched a good game tonight and kind of set the tone for us. It was good to get that first one out here."

Davis went 2-for-3 with two walks and two RBIs. He launched a solo shot to left off A's starter Jarrod Parker in a two-run sixth inning when Baltimore increased its lead to 6-2. In his previous at-bat, Davis struck out swinging.

"That second at-bat I was chasing balls out of the zone," Davis said. "I think he threw me one pitch in the zone I fouled off. The others were down or away. I got up there my third at-bat and was just looking for a ball I could drive. He gave it to me, and it snuck out of here."

Davis wasn't Baltimore's only hitting star. McLouth went 2-for-5 with a double, two runs, two RBIs and two stolen bases. Adam Jones went 3-for-5 with a double, two runs and an RBI. Nick Markakis had two hits in four trips, drove in two and scored twice. Every Baltimore batter had at least one hit.

"It seems like a couple guys have been hot at a time, then a couple other guys, and things like that," McLouth said. "People started to roll here in unison as a complete lineup. We got some pretty generous hits tonight. Some balls found holes, some bloopers and things like that. But those are the kind of hits that give you confidence. We swung the bat well, took some walks and put some runs on the board."

Hammel (3-1) held the A's to two runs, both unearned, and three hits over six innings, winning his second straight start. He struck out two and walked two.

Parker (0-4) lasted just 5 1/3 innings and lost his fourth straight game, the longest skid of his young career. He gave up six earned runs on eight hits as his ERA rose from 7.50 to 8.10. Parker, who went 13-8 with a 3.47 ERA as a rookie last year, struck out five and walked three.

Coming off a 1-5 road trip, the A's opened a seven-game homestand with another loss.

"It was a bad game all around for us," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "Just an ugly game."

The A's took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the second, but Baltimore answered with three runs in the top of the third off Parker.

Nolan Reimold started the rally with a one-out, opposite field double into the right field corner. McLouth grounded a sharp single to center, driving Reimold home and cutting the A's lead to 2-1. After McLouth stole second, Markakis brought him home with a line drive single to right, making it 2-2. Then Jones roped a double down the left field line, scoring Markakis to give Baltimore a 3-2 lead.

"It's kind of embarrassing," Parker said. "We put a two-spot up and then give it right back. I think if I go out there and throw a clean inning, it's a completely different ballgame. Something I've just got to keep working on. It's going to fall my way."

Hammel said he struggled to find his command in the second inning, but he got over the rough patch.

"Basically that's the story line. Usually you can't survive when you're trying to find it on the mound in the game, but I did a nice job in the second in limiting the damage," Hammel said. "That could have been a pretty bad inning. The guys scored a lot of runs for us, so I was able to stay aggressive and just kind of get through it.

"It was nice not to have to play a one-run, two-run ballgame, which is all we've been doing for a year and a half now. It's was nice to have a little comfort there and to get the road trip started off in a nice way."

NOTES: A's pitching coach Curt Young was ejected in the top of the third by first base umpire Jim Reynolds. ... The A's reinstated 2B Adam Rosales (strained left ribcage muscle) from the 15-day disabled list and optioned INF Andy Parrino to Triple-A Sacramento. Rosales, who had been out since March 26, played three games for Class A Stockton and three for Triple-A Sacramento on a rehab assignment. He came off the bench and went 1-for-2 Thursday, and he probably will start Friday's game, Melvin said. ... CF Yoenis Cespedes (strained left hand muscle) began a rehab assignment Thursday night with Sacramento as the designated hitter, and he went 1-for-4 with an RBI. He's eligible to come off the disabled list Sunday. "If everything goes well the next three days, then we look to activate him Sunday," Melvin said. ... The Orioles recalled LHP Zach Britton from Triple-A Norfolk, where he was 1-0 with a 1.98 ERA in three starts. He'll be available out of the bullpen this series and is a possible option to start Monday at Seattle, manager Buck Showalter said. Britton is 16-14 with a 4.74 ERA in 40 major league games, 39 of them starts. ... Orioles RHP Steve Johnson (strained right lat) gave up six hits and four runs over five innings Wednesday for Norfolk in a rehab start. "He'll make his next start in four days," Showalter said. "So far so good. He feels good physically."
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