DETROIT (AP) — Paul Blackburn threw 6 2/3 strong innings to improve to 4-0 as the Oakland A’s beat the Detroit Tigers 2-0 on Monday night to snap a season-high nine-game losing streak.
“It was a complete game,” A’s manager Mark Kotsay said. “That’s what it takes to get out of these situations when you haven’t had success as a team. It takes a good group effort and all around tonight, I thought the team played really good baseball.”
Tony Kemp hit a solo home run in the third and Chad Pinder added an RBI single in the fourth.
“I just saw a changeup and I got my foot down and tried to put the best swing on it I could,” Kemp said. “I’m just happy (Austin) Meadows didn’t rob a home run from me. Feels good to contribute to the team.
“When you’re on a losing streak, it feels like it’s never going to end. So to slap hands with guys today felt really good.”
Blackburn gave up four hits and struck out three before leaving in the seventh inning. Despite walking two batters, rookie Dany Jiménez escaped damage and earned his fifth save to finish off the four-hitter.
“It’s been a long time since I got into the seventh,” Blackburn said. “Anytime you can put a start together like that, it feels good.”
The Tigers, who managed just four hits and have been shut out in two consecutive games, have lost six in a row and 13 of their last 15.
“There’s growing frustration across the board,” Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said. “We’re getting beat in relatively close games, for the most part and we expect more out of ourselves.”
Michael Pineda (1-2) took the loss, despite allowing only two runs on six hits in 6.2 innings.
Javier Báez and Hinch were ejected after arguing balls and strikes in the ninth after Báez was called out on strikes.