A's continue domination of Red Sox in Oakland

" Hero: One night after lefty Lenny DiNardo shut down the Sox, another southpaw, Kennedy, took over.

" Figure this: The A's have taken the first three games of the series to extend their home winning streak against the Red Sox to seven.

" Quotable: "We
don't have the intensity we had. That's my view. We have a lot of
guys trying, trying, trying, but can't come through." -- Red Sox DH David Ortiz

-- ESPN.com news services

Athletics 3, Red Sox 2

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Joe Kennedy has been Oakland's tough-luck
pitcher the first two months. So perhaps it was fitting that a
lucky bounce helped give Kennedy his first win in nearly a month.

Kennedy shut down Boston for seven innings, Bobby Crosby drove
in two runs after a potential groundout deflected off first base
for a double, and the Oakland Athletics handed the Red Sox their
season-high fourth straight loss, 3-2 on Wednesday night.

"It's nice to actually get a win," Kennedy said after his
first victory since May 10. "I keep seeing that wins don't really
mean anything or establish how well you pitch in a game. But it's
always nice to get one."

The A's have ridden their strong starting staff to win the first
three games of this four-game series, extending their home winning
streak over Boston to seven. The games this week have all been
close, an extra-inning win Monday, a 2-0 decision Tuesday, followed
by the one-run game Wednesday.

Kennedy (2-4) followed up the performances by Dan Haren and
Lenny DiNardo, holding Boston scoreless until the seventh inning to
win for just the second time in 11 starts this season. He has
allowed more than three runs only once all season but has rarely
gotten the support he needed to win.

But with RBI hits by two slumping players -- Crosby and
Jack Cust
-- in a three-run fourth inning against Tim Wakefield (5-7), Kennedy
had enough runs to get the win.

"When I saw him after the game, I said, 'We finally got you
one,"' Crosby said. "It was good to see that. He pitched so well
the whole year. It's tough to see as a teammate, a guy that has
done so well but we can't score any runs for him. His luck was
bound to turn a little bit if he keeps pitching the way he was."

Kennedy allowed two runs and seven hits and was also helped by
three double plays started by third baseman Eric Chavez, giving
Boston eight in the previous two games.

The Red Sox finally broke through in the seventh when
Kevin Youkilis hit an RBI triple and scored on Wily Mo Pena's groundout
to cut Oakland's lead to 3-2. Kennedy got out of the inning and
three relievers finished it, with Santiago Casilla getting four
outs for his first career save.

Boston, which still has the best record in the majors at 37-21,
is now on its longest skid since dropping six straight last August,
the final three in Oakland.

The losing streak started with a home loss to the
New York Yankees on Sunday night, followed by a cross-country flight that
didn't get the Red Sox into their Bay Area hotel until 5:30 a.m.
Monday. David Ortiz said the travel has sapped some of Boston's

"We're playing well but it's just not here," Ortiz said. "We
don't have the intensity we had. That's my view. We have a lot of
guys trying, trying, trying, but can't come through."

The frustration boiled over in the eighth inning when manager
Terry Francona was ejected by home plate umpire Dan Iassogna for
arguing balls and strikes.

Oakland has its starting pitchers to thank for a season-high
five-game winning streak. A's starters are now 6-1 with a 1.29 ERA
in the first nine games of this 10-game homestand, helping Oakland
move a season-best four games over .500.

The A's took advantage of a lucky bounce to score three times in
the fourth inning. Chavez's one-out grounder hit first base and
bounced over Youkilis into right field for a double.

"Things aren't going our way," Youkilis said. "That's the
kind of stuff that happens. There's not much you can do about it.
You just have to bounce back."

Cust, who had only one RBI in his last 13 games, scored Chavez
on a two-out double. Crosby, who had six hits in his previous 40
at-bats, added a two-run single to make it 3-0.

"I had Crosby 1-2 and I tried to bury a hard one in the dirt
but I left it up," Wakefield said. "It's tough when one pitch
makes the difference. I make a bad pitch and they get two extra

Wakefield's knuckleball had Oakland fooled most of the rest of
the night. He struck out a season-high eight batters in 6 2-3
innings, allowing three runs and seven hits. Wakefield has lost
four of his last five starts with a 7.98 ERA.

Game Notes
Evan O'Dorney, the 13-year-old from Danville, Calif., who
won the Scripps National Spelling Bee last week, threw out the
ceremonial first pitch. ... The A's, who rank second-to-last in the
AL in steals, stole four bases against Wakefield and backup C
Doug Mirabelli -- their most in a game since May 4, 2001, also against
Boston. ... The Red Sox have hit into at least three double plays
in a game four times in six games this month. ... Kennedy's six
strikeouts were one more than he had in his previous four starts