OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Jason Schmidt admitted to overthrowing his pitches and being lazy, which would be somewhat understandable
considering he already had a five-run lead when he took the mound.
Still, Schmidt pitched into the ninth inning to win his
career-best 10th consecutive decision, leading the San Francisco Giants
to their seventh straight victory, 6-4 over the Oakland
Athletics on Friday night.
Schmidt (10-2), coming off a one-hit gem against Boston last
Sunday, didn't look as sharp this outing. He hasn't lost since
dropping his first two starts of the season and is tied for the
major league lead in wins. His 10 straight wins are the most by a
Giants pitcher since Vida Blue won 10 in a row in 1978.
He allowed four runs and five hits, struck out four and walked
three in 8 1/3 innings before a sellout crowd of 48,189.
"It wasn't really a struggle," Schmidt said. "When you get a
big lead like that, you don't want to say you have it in the bag,
but you get on cruise control. You make pitches you usually
Scott Eyre came in after Schmidt and allowed Scott Hatteberg's
two-run homer in the ninth and a double to Erubiel Durazo. The
Giants then brought in Matt Herges, who gave up a single to
Bobby Crosby before getting Damian Miller to ground into a game-ending
double play for his 20th save.
The Giants have won 11 of 12 overall to regain the lead in the
Schmidt was staked to an early lead on back-to-back homers by
Deivi Cruz and Pedro Feliz in the first. Cruz hit a three-run homer
and Feliz followed with a solo shot, but all five Giants runs were
unearned after a fielding mistake by the A's.
Oakland missed a potential double play when starter Barry Zito
(4-5) threw to second baseman Marco Scutaro trying to get
Ray Durham on a slow roller by Marquis Grissom. But Scutaro was
standing several feet behind the bag, apparently thinking Crosby,
the shortstop, would make the play. Crosby received an error on the
"I thought it was going to get by (Zito), so I took a step in
and hesitated for one second and no one was there," Crosby said.
"It was definitely my fault. I should have been at second."
Zito then walked Bonds to load the bases.
Edgardo Alfonzo hit a sacrifice fly, then Cruz connected on a
1-0 pitch for his first homer. Feliz then homered off the top of
the scoreboard in left field, his 13th of the year.
Zito didn't blame Crosby for the miscommunication.
"As a pitcher, you're taught to just throw to second and assume
someone's going to be on the base," Zito said. "Bobby had the
bag, but for some reason wasn't there. I've got to make the
adjustment and throw to first."
Zito allowed one earned run -- on Michael Tucker's sacrifice fly
in the fifth -- but Oakland's offense couldn't do much against
Schmidt didn't allow a baserunner past first until Miller's
sixth-inning double. Crosby hit a two-run homer for the A's in the
seventh, his 10th this season.
Zito hasn't won since a 10-6 victory against Cincinnati on June
8, a span of three starts. After Feliz's homer, Zito retired eight
straight before Feliz hit a fourth-inning single. Zito allowed
seven hits in seven innings, struck out two and walked three.
It was a disappointing start to a six-game homestand for the A's
after going 3-7 on their recent roadtrip.
Cruz has a five-game hitting streak and is batting .526
(10-for-19) during the stretch.
"They've given me a chance to play and I've shown what I can
do," Cruz said.
Manager Felipe Alou said he'll keep Cruz in the lineup this
weekend because "I can't betray the guy."
Barry Bonds went 0-for-2 with two walks as the designated
hitter. After walking on five pitches in the first, Bonds hit a
deep fly to center in the third that was caught by Mark Kotsay
against the wall. He walked on four pitches in the fifth, then
flied out again in the seventh.
Bonds hasn't homered in 11 games, a span of 28 at-bats.
The Bay Area rivals split their season series 3-3 last year,
with each club winning two of three in its home ballpark. They meet
again next weekend in San Francisco to conclude the interleague
Giants left fielder Dustan Mohr crashed against the wall to
catch a fly hit by Jermaine Dye in the ninth and bruised his right
shoulder. Mohr took several minutes to get up, then later said he'd
be available to play Saturday. Mohr also made a great relay throw
to Durham at second base in the fourth, and Durham caught Kotsay
off the bag at first.
^Notes:@ Cruz is batting .350 (7-for-20) with two homers against
Zito. ... New Oakland closer Octavio Dotel, acquired from Houston
in a three-team trade Thursday, is expected to join the club
Saturday. ... Entering this series, the teams were tied 19-19
facing each other in the regular season.