V for Venditte: Switch-pitcher gets 1st victory, AB

'Probably the best moment of his career,' A's manager Melvin says

V for Venditte: Switch-pitcher gets 1st victory, AB

PHOENIX -- Switch-pitcher Pat Venditte picked up his first Major League victory Sunday afternoon in Arizona, returning from a scoreless, two-inning outing to a beer shower that was "cold, but well worth it," he said, smiling, after the A's 7-4, 11-inning win.

"It was nice to be able to experience that first win with this group of guys," said Venditte, who also had his first career at-bat. "Things haven't really gone our way as of late, so to come back and get that one today, it's very special."

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Semien's big hit in 11th sends A's to series win

Semien's big hit in 11th sends A's to series win

PHOENIX -- Marcus Semien's two-run base hit off D-backs closer Brad Ziegler in the 11th inning lifted the A's to a series-winning, 7-4 victory at Chase Field on Sunday afternoon.

Ziegler recorded two quick outs to begin the inning but surrendered back-to-back singles to Danny Valencia and Stephen Vogt and hit Josh Phegley with a pitch to load the bases for Semien, who singled down the right-field line. Eric Sogard followed with an RBI single.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Doolittle, Pomeranz sign of good things ahead for 'pen

'Best we've seen him,' Melvin says of Doolittle's perfect 8th on Sunday

Doolittle, Pomeranz sign of good things ahead for 'pen

PHOENIX -- Sean Doolittle, trying to regain his All-Star form, took a big step in the right direction Sunday with a perfect eighth inning that included two strikeouts in the A's 7-4, 11-inning victory in Arizona.

"Best we've seen him, and you can see the confidence grow after the first few pitches," manager Bob Melvin said.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Doubront takes hill vs. Angels to open homestand

Doubront takes hill vs. Angels to open homestand

Hector Santiago starts against fellow lefty Felix Doubront in the opener of a three-game series between the Angels and A's from O.co Coliseum on Monday, with first pitch set for 7:07 p.m. PT.

Santiago (7-8, 3.13 ERA) gave up five runs on seven hits and three walks in 4 1/3 innings against the Tigers on Wednesday, a night that saw Justin Verlander come three outs away from a no-hitter, and he hasn't really been the same in the second half. Since making the All-Star team, the Angels' southpaw has a 5.23 ERA over an eight-start stretch.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Vogt completes 'mission' for redemption

A's catcher rebounds with 17th homer in 3-RBI night

Vogt completes 'mission' for redemption

PHOENIX -- A's catcher Stephen Vogt, waking from what he called "one of my worst games on both sides of the ball in a long time," returned to the park Saturday and cranked a homer and drove in all three runs in Oakland's 3-2 victory over the D-backs.

"I was obviously not in a good place last night, so I was excited to see I was back in the lineup and was ready to go tonight," said Vogt, whose two passed balls led to a pair of unearned runs in Friday's series-opening loss. "I had a lot of steam to get off, and it felt pretty good to get off to a good start."

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Davis undergoes successful hip surgery

A's first baseman expected to be ready by Spring Training

Davis undergoes successful hip surgery

PHOENIX -- A's first baseman Ike Davis underwent successful left hip surgery Thursday and is expected to be ready by Spring Training, according to Oakland trainer Nick Paparesta.

The arthroscopic procedure, which repaired a torn labrum, was performed by Dr. Marc Philippon in Vail, Colo. Davis remains there, resting comfortably, and is scheduled to return home Tuesday. Paparesta said he would begin therapy immediately.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Vogt makes big splash as A's sink D-backs

Vogt makes big splash as A's sink D-backs

PHOENIX -- Stephen Vogt drove home all three runs as the A's snapped a three-game losing streak by edging the D-backs, 3-2, on Saturday night at Chase Field.

The A's grabbed an early lead in the second when Vogt hit a two-run homer off D-backs starter Jhoulys Chacin. Vogt's homer splashed down into the pool located beyond the wall in right-center.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hale, mentor Melvin reunite in faceoff as managers

Hale, mentor Melvin reunite in faceoff as managers

PHOENIX -- From 2012-14, Chip Hale was Bob Melvin's closest confidant, serving as his bench coach in Oakland and as his third-base coach in Arizona from 2007-09.

Friday night at Chase Field the pair squared off for the first time as opposing managers as Melvin brought his A's to town for a three-game series with the D-backs, who took the opener, 6-4.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Fortunes turn for Gray, A's in shaky 6th

Fortunes turn for Gray, A's in shaky 6th

PHOENIX -- The A's were forced to relive several key moments from the sixth inning of Friday's series-opening, 6-4 loss to the D-backs in an attempt to explain just what went wrong in the mistake-laden frame.

Catcher Stephen Vogt shouldered the blame for much of the game-changing events that led Sonny Gray to throw 28 pitches in the inning. Vogt, who had just five passed balls to his name entering the game, committed two in the frame.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's can't hold off D-backs, drop 3rd straight

A's can't hold off D-backs, drop 3rd straight

PHOENIX -- The D-backs rallied from an early deficit to defeat the A's, 6-4, on Friday night at Chase Field to snap a four-game losing streak while extending Oakland's losing skid to three games.

The A's gave starter Sonny Gray a 2-0 lead on RBIs by Billy Burns and Mark Canha. Gray, meanwhile, handcuffed the D-backs, holding them to just two hits through five innings while maintaining the American League's best ERA (2.13).

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Inbox: Roster expansion will likely include Triple-A pitchers

Beat reporter Jane Lee answers fans' questions

Inbox: Roster expansion will likely include Triple-A pitchers

A's beat reporter Jane Lee answers fans' pressing pitching questions -- and more.

Who do you think will be called up when rosters expand? Please tell me Barry Zito will finally get to pitch in Oakland. I don't think anyone understands why he keeps getting passed over, and I'd love to see him in the green and gold again.
-- Kristina M., Livermore, Calif.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's can't capitalize on promising start off Felix

A's can't capitalize on promising start off Felix

SEATTLE -- Nelson Cruz clubbed his Major League-leading 39th home run and Felix Hernandez pitched eight innings of two-run ball to win his 15th game of the season, an 8-2 decision over the A's on Wednesday as the Mariners wrapped up a series win at Safeco Field.

Hernandez gave up a leadoff homer to Billy Burns and a seventh-inning shot to Brett Lawrie, but allowed just those two runs and three hits with one walk and seven strikeouts. Hernandez (15-8, 3.66) had an 8.48 ERA over his previous five starts, but he dominated the A's to move into a tie with Dallas Keuchel of the Astros for the most wins in the American League.

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Greg Johns and Jane Lee are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Burns' first-pitch strategy keeps paying off

Burns' first-pitch strategy keeps paying off

SEATTLE -- For as many unpredictable happenings that have occurred during a tumultuous season for the A's, there are certain events that have simply come to be expected.

Billy Burns swinging at the first pitch is one of them.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

#TBT: Rickey Henderson sets single-season SB record

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#TBT: Rickey Henderson sets single-season SB record

By now, even the most casual baseball fans know that Rickey Henderson was -- and, if mascots are to be believed, still is -- one fast dude. But it bears repeating just how crazy Henderson's dominance on the basepaths was, because the numbers look like they came out of a video game. Case in point: Lou Brock, number two on the all-time steals list, is closer to Carl Crawford in 44th place (!) than he is to Rickey.

And, if your mind still isn't sufficiently blown, there's this: On August 27, 1982, Henderson set a new single-season record by swiping his 119th bag against the Brewers ... with 33 whole games left.

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Bullpen rises to the occasion vs. M's

A's relief corps has 9 1/3 scoreless frames this series

Bullpen rises to the occasion vs. M's

SEATTLE -- The A's fell victim to yet another one-run loss Tuesday, a 6-5 defeat to the Mariners representing their 30th of the season, but not because of bullpen blunders that have affected so many of these close outcomes.

Rather, it was the bullpen that gave the club every opportunity to come out on top this time. The A's got 3 1/3 scoreless innings from Fernando Abad and Fernando Rodriguez in relief of right-hander Jesse Chavez, who was done in by consecutive three-run frames.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Semien homers, but A's can't hold early lead

Semien homers, but A's can't hold early lead

SEATTLE -- Robinson Cano became the first player in Major League history to open his career with 11 straight seasons with 30 doubles, and the Mariners came from behind to top the A's, 6-5, on Tuesday at Safeco Field.

"You've just got to keep fighting and competing," Cano said after Seattle (58-68) won for the second time in its past six games. "You've got teammates here and people that follow you all over. You help each other and play hard until the season's over ... just go out there and play hard every single day."

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Greg Johns and Jane Lee are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Oblique injury likely ends Graveman's season

A's right-hander won't even play catch for three to four weeks

Oblique injury likely ends Graveman's season

SEATTLE -- A's right-hander Kendall Graveman, who suffered a left oblique strain during his six-inning outing against the Rays on Sunday, is not expected to pitch again this season.

Manager Bob Melvin is not ready to say as much but hinted at the possibility, noting Graveman won't even be back to playing catch for another three or four weeks.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's name Washington 3B coach; Gallego dismissed

A's name Washington 3B coach; Gallego dismissed

SEATTLE -- Oakland reinstalled Ron Washington as its third-base coach Monday, dismissing longtime A's fixture Mike Gallego ahead of the club's series opener in Seattle.

Gallego was in his 19th season in the A's organization and seventh as third-base and infield coach, but he was under a microscope for much of the year in the wake of myriad defensive and baserunning issues -- including several over the weekend.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Reddick's hustle looms large in A's comeback

Outfielder legs out infield single as tying run scores ahead of go-ahead homer

Reddick's hustle looms large in A's comeback

SEATTLE -- Though their record may not reflect the type of resiliency that led to Monday's 11-5 victory in Seattle, the A's continue to showcase it with pride.

The last-place club rallied from behind in a big way for a second straight day, not only getting continued bursts of offensive production but, this time, one of the better bullpen performances of the season, too.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's spoil Iwakuma's no-hitter homecoming

A's spoil Iwakuma's no-hitter homecoming

SEATTLE -- In his first Safeco Field start since his no-hitter, Mariners right-hander Hisashi Iwakuma gave up seven runs in the fifth inning as the A's stormed from behind for an 11-5 win Monday night to snap an eight-game road losing streak.

Oakland starter Felix Doubront left the game after two innings with a bruised right foot after being hit by a Robinson Cano line drive and the Mariners immediately racked up five runs in the third off reliever Evan Scribner as Franklin Gutierrez and Mark Trumbo homered.

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Greg Johns is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Mariners Musings blog, and listen to his podcast. Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's find groove in 7-run 7th, surge past Rays

A's find groove in 7-run 7th, surge past Rays

OAKLAND -- The A's scored seven runs in a mammoth seventh inning Sunday, running away with an 8-2, come-from-behind win over the Rays and avoiding a three-game sweep at the Coliseum.

The Rays surged in front, 2-1, in the top of the seventh, scoring two runs off Sean Doolittle in the lefty's first appearance since May 27. But the A's were far from done, as eight straight batters reached base. Eric Sogard's two-run single gave the A's the lead for good, and Mark Canha's bases-clearing triple extend the lead to 7-2.

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Willie Bans is a contributor to MLB.com. Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jonathan Mayo

Healy, Wendle on MLB Pipeline's Prospect Team of the Week

Houston phenoms on list 20 times thus far, most of any team

Healy, Wendle on MLB Pipeline's Prospect Team of the Week

MLBPipeline.com's Prospect Team of the Week honors the best performances from the previous seven days. Any player currently on an organization Top 30 Prospects list on our Prospect Watch is eligible, including big leaguers.

The Houston Astros might be the feel-good surprise story in the big leagues, but let's not forget much of that has been built from within, taking advantage of one of the best farm systems in baseball.

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Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com and writes a blog, B3. Follow @JonathanMayo on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bats pick up Doolittle after shaky return to hill

A's lefty walks pair, allows 2 runs in first appearance since May

Bats pick up Doolittle after shaky return to hill

OAKLAND - Sean Doolittle's first game with the A's since May 27 -- and just second this season -- didn't go as planned, but Doolittle was still pleased to be back on the mound pitching in the Majors.

He gave up two earned runs on one hit and two walks before departing in the seventh after 2/3 of an inning and 23 pitches (12 strikes). Doolittle was on the hook before the A's rallied to score seven runs in the seventh en route to an 8-2 win over the Rays on Sunday.

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Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's ballboy saves his bullpen with diving stop

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A's ballboy saves his bullpen with diving stop

It's a trope as old as the action movie itself -- when things are their darkest, the protagonist nobly gives himself up, sacrificing one to save many. History echoes with their names: Clint EastwoodCommissioner GordonApu

To this illustrious list of the brave, we can now add this ballboy from Saturday's Rays-Athletics game. With a ground ball bearing down on the Oakland bullpen, there was little time to react, and our intrepid hero did the only thing he could to uphold his oath.

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Doolittle activated after lengthy shoulder rehab

'The arm just feels so much better,' A's lefty says

Doolittle activated after lengthy shoulder rehab

OAKLAND -- The A's celebrated the much-anticipated return of Sean Doolittle on Saturday, activating the lefty from the disabled list after his second lengthy rehab of the season.

Doolittle, who has nursed two separate shoulder injuries this year, including a strain that put him back on the DL in May, returns following an encouraging rehab assignment with Triple-A Nashville.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gray misses out on 13th win as 'pen falters in 9th

Gray misses out on 13th win as 'pen falters in 9th

OAKLAND -- Asdrubal Cabrera homered and drove in the winning runs of a 5-4 Rays victory over the A's with a two-run double in the ninth inning at the Coliseum on Saturday evening.

Tampa Bay trailed by one run entering the ninth against switch-pitcher Pat Venditte, who issued a one-out walk to Daniel Nava and gave up a double to Logan Forsythe, setting the stage for Cabrera's game-changing hit off lefty Drew Pomeranz. The Rays were 0-49 when trailing after eight innings entering the day.

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Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Late-inning losses adding up to theme for '15

'They're tough, man,' A's starter Gray says after missing out on 13th win

Late-inning losses adding up to theme for '15

OAKLAND -- The A's late-inning losses continue to pile to new heights, as does the frustration that accompanies them.

A club aching for some mid-summer mojo was well on its way to a feel-good victory over the Rays in front of a sold-out crowd on Saturday evening until its bullpen imploded again in a 5-4 loss, denying American League ERA leader Sonny Gray (2.10) of his 13th victory after eight innings of three-run ball.

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A's can't find big hit to back Bassitt vs. Rays

A's can't find big hit to back Bassitt vs. Rays

OAKLAND -- Desmond Jennings homered and the Rays beat the A's, 2-1, in Friday's three-game series opener at the Coliseum behind lefty Drew Smyly, who tossed 5 2/3 scoreless innings to earn his first win of the season.

"Great win," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "I thought Drew Smyly really bounced back nicely, kind of like we thought he was going to."

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Trevor Hass is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Major Lee-ague, and follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.