Dye homers in consecutive innings


ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) -- Jermaine Dye is healthy again, and he's
already making up for last year's lost season.

Dye homered twice to drive in four runs, and extended his
season-opening hitting streak to eight games, to help power the
Oakland Athletics past the Texas Rangers 9-4 Wednesday night.

"I'm just back to normal," Dye said. "I'm not having to worry
about anything, any injuries or anything like. It takes a lot off
your mind to just go out there and do what you're capable of

With five homers, one more than he had all last season, Dye has
the AL lead. He's hitting .344, and his 12 RBI also top the

Dye was limited to 65 games last season after extended stays on
the disabled list for torn cartilage in his right knee and then a
separated right shoulder. His .172 average was the lowest in the
majors for a player with 200 at-bats, and a franchise worst.

Now he's looking more like his old self. Maybe even better.

"It's incredible," rookie shortstop Bobby Crosby said. "We
know how hard he worked in the offseason. You can tell he's a
confident guy."

Crosby, who replaced former AL MVP Miguel Tejada as the starter,
hit his first homer in the fifth, a three-run shot that gave
Oakland a 9-1 lead and chased R.A. Dickey (1-1).

Dye's homers came in consecutive innings and staked the A's to a
6-0 lead. It was his ninth career multihomer game, the first since
hitting two against Texas in September 2002.

Unlike 2002 AL Cy Young winner Barry Zito a night earlier, Mark
Redman didn't need all of his big lead. Redman (1-0) gave up eight
hits against the major league's best hitting team, but scattered
them throughout six innings.

"It's nice to get run support when you don't have 1-2-3
innings," said Redman, who won a career-best 14 games last season
for World Series champ Florida.

Alfonso Soriano, acquired in the trade that sent Alex Rodriguez
to the New York Yankees, hit his first home run for the Rangers, a
two-run shot in the fifth that made it 9-3.

Oakland has won four of five against Texas this season. The A's
and Zito held on Tuesday night to win the series opener 10-9.

"After all of those runs yesterday, you have to give Redman
some credit," manager Ken Macha said. "He went out and pitched
terrifically. He's going to give up hits, but he makes pitches when
runners are on."

Dye led off the second with a homer. After Eric Chavez drove in
two runs with a single in the third, Dye hit his three-run homer.

"When you're locked in, you're locked," said Dye, who also
homered Tuesday. "I'm seeing the ball really well and every time I
swing, it's usually a strike and I'm usually hitting it hard

After Dye's second homer, Dickey retired eight of the next nine
batters. But he got in trouble again in the fifth, allowing a
two-out double to Erubiel Durazo and a single to Scott Hatteberg
that set up Crosby's first major league homer.

"I just didn't command a pitch other than the fastball for a
strike, and didn't really command that well," Dickey said. "I was
fighting my mechanics a little bit. You've just got to turn the

Dickey allowed only three unearned runs in seven innings against
Anaheim in his first start Friday. He gave up nine runs and nine
hits over 4 2-3 innings against the A's, and all three of his walks
came in the five-run third.

Ryan Drese, recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma earlier in the day,
then allowed two hits over 4 1-3 scoreless innings. Drese was
called up after the Rangers put Mickey Callaway, Tuesday night's
loser, on the 15-day disabled list with nerve inflammation in his
right arm.

Chad Harville, who might be sent down to the minors Thursday,
worked two innings after Redman left. Ricardo Rincon finished.

Brad Fullmer had a pair of doubles, and scored the Rangers'
first run in the fourth on Gerald Laird's sacrifice fly.

Game notes
Oakland is 32-11 against Texas since the start of the 2002
season. ... Rangers LF Eric Young was 2-for-3, the fourth time in
five games he's had two hits. He had an RBI groundout in the eighth
inning. ... SS Michael Young has at least one hit and one run
scored in all six home games this season. ... Manager Ken Macha
said Harville or RHP Justin Duchscherer would be sent down when the
A's make a move before Thursday's game to recall scheduled starter
Rich Harden from Triple-A Sacramento.