Final

Series: Game 1 of 2

Cleveland leads 1-0 (as of 5/3)

Game 1: Wednesday, May 3
Cleveland14Final
Oakland3
Game 2: Thursday, May 4
Cleveland4Final
Oakland12

Indians 14

(15-13, 7-7 away)

Athletics 3

(14-13, 5-8 home)

    10:05 PM ET, May 3, 2006

    O.co Coliseum, Oakland, California 

    123456789 R H E
    CLE 103001900 14 18 0
    OAK 003000000 3 8 0

    W: P. Byrd (4-2)

    L: D. Haren (1-3)

    Nine-run seventh inning fuels Tribe blowout over A's

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Paul Byrd can hardly believe the offensive numbers his Cleveland teammates are putting up on the days he starts: 11, 10, 15 and 14 runs in his four wins alone.

    "I'm just overwhelmed with my team scoring runs for me. It's getting to be ridiculous," Byrd said. "Now 14? It's a joke."

    Casey Blake hit a three-run homer in a nine-run seventh inning, and Travis Hafner had four RBI to lead the Indians over Oakland 14-3 Wednesday night and end the Athletics' season-best winning streak at five games.

    Byrd (4-2) pitched seven strong innings to beat Oakland for the first time in his career after going 0-4 in seven previous starts against the A's. Byrd showed signs Cleveland's rotation might be coming around with starters able to pitch deeper into games the way manager Eric Wedge hopes it will be.

    Byrd got all the offense he needed and then some.

    He even received a call from Atlanta ace John Smoltz last week in which Smoltz admitted he envied all the run support Byrd was getting -- though both players are religious and being envious of anyone is not an accepted practice in their faith.

    Hafner hit a two-run homer, Jason Michaels went 4-for-6 with two RBI and rookie Kelly Shoppach hit a two-run single in the seventh for his first career RBI. Jhonny Peralta had three hits for the Indians, who stretched the top of the seventh out for roughly 40 minutes.

    "It's important," Hafner said of big innings. "Kelly Shoppach had one of the biggest hits, and I thought he gave us some breathing room. It almost seemed to put the game out of reach. That was a big at-bat in the game. He really came through and after that we were able to relax."

    Byrd had gone only five innings and three innings in his past two outings, but that included that 15-3 win over Josh Beckett and Boston last Thursday at home.

    Bobby Crosby hit a full-count, two-run homer in the third to pull the A's to 4-3, his fourth of the season and second in as many days.

    "They got the big inning and opened it up," A's manager Ken Macha said. "We were right in it until then. They have a tremendous offensive team."

    Frank Thomas hit a sacrifice fly and Mark Kotsay had two hits and scored a run for the A's, who gave up 15 runs to the New York Yankees in an opening-day loss April 3.

    Dan Haren (1-3) lasted only 5 2-3 innings, struggling after coming off his first win of the season last Friday at Kansas City in which he threw a season-high 116 pitches in eight innings.

    Haren allowed three straight singles to start the game, including Peralta's RBI single to left, but escaped the inning having allowed only one run. The Indians got four more hits in the third with Hafner's 10th homer of the season and a triple by Blake that right fielder Bobby Kielty charged and misplayed. It was Blake's first triple of the season and fifth of his eight-year career after hitting one last season and three in 2004.

    Hafner entered that at-bat 0-for-4 lifetime against Haren, then hit his third home run in as many games. He also homered in three straight from April 5-8.

    Michaels' third single of the game in the sixth scored Aaron Boone and chased Haren, who is yet to show the form that made him a 14-game winner in 2005 in his first full season as a starter.

    "Games like this happen every once in a while," Haren said. "It happened on opening day and we bounced back. I fell behind in the count a few too many times and I paid the price. ... Top to bottom that's one of the best lineups in the American League. They don't strike out too much and they work the count. I got into too many hitter's counts."

    Haren allowed five runs on a season-high 11 hits, struck out three with an intentional walk. Every Indians starter had a hit or drove in a run.

    Game notes


    The Indians' seventh was their biggest inning since scoring 11 in the ninth last Aug. 9 at Kansas City. ... Blake missed hitting for the cycle by a double. ... Oakland RF Milton Bradley missed his sixth straight game with a sprained right knee. The A's hoped he would take batting practice right-handed but it didn't happen. ... The A's hadn't received word from Major League Baseball about a possible suspension or fine for C Jason Kendall, who charged the mound after nearly being hit by a pitch from John Lackey, triggering a bench-clearing fight Tuesday against the Angels. "I'm sure something will happen," manager Ken Macha said. ... Cleveland C Victor Martinez, who has reached base safely in 42 straight games and has a 15-game hitting streak, had the night off. ... Byrd went 0-2 with a 4.37 ERA in four starts against Oakland last season. ... Hockey star Jonathan Cheechoo of the playoff San Jose Sharks threw out the ceremonial first pitch. ... Oakland's Joe Kennedy allowed his first run of the season, ending a stretch of 10 1-3 scoreless innings.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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