NEW YORK (AP) - All of a sudden, Dillon Gee looked like a scatter-armed kid out there.
Normally so poised and polished on the mound, the New York Mets rookie walked six batters in the first three innings of a 7-3 loss to the Oakland Athletics on Tuesday night, sending him to his first defeat of the season.
``I couldn't locate the fastball, and that's what it all comes off of. If you can't locate the fastball, you're probably not going to do very well,' Gee said. ``I don't really care about the wins and losses. They come and go. But the frustrating part is I really didn't give us a chance tonight.'
Josh Outman threw another impressive game, Jemile Weeks scored three times and the resurgent A's walked their way to an early lead at Citi Field.
Ryan Sweeney had four hits, including an RBI single, and Oakland won its sixth straight game after dropping 13 of 14. It's the team's longest winning streak since a seven-game run in September 2009.
``I'm really concerned, because we have not played well at home since April,' Mets manager Terry Collins said.
Gee (7-1) was all over the place in a matchup of promising young pitchers. He walked his first two batters, and a single by Coco Crisp loaded the bases.
Hideki Matsui hit a sacrifice fly and Conor Jackson drove in a run with a groundout.
Gee walked Weeks and Cliff Pennington again in the third, and two more free passes soon followed. Sweeney's infield single made it 4-0.
Trying to become the first Mets rookie to win eight straight decisions, Gee walked six in the first three innings. His previous career high for a game was four.
``That's certainly not the guy we know,' Collins said. ``I don't think he made any adjustments tonight.'
New York won all 10 of Gee's previous starts this season.
``He's way too good to walk guys,' Collins said.
The lone bright spot for the Mets was Jason Bay, who finally showed his old pop at the plate. Bay hit a long homer in the sixth to make it 7-2, his first extra-base hit in 25 games and 89 at_bats - the longest drought of his career.
It was Bay's first home run since May 13 at Houston, and the former slugger wasn't done. He added an RBI triple in the eighth that might have cleared the center-field fence if not for a leaping Crisp, who knocked the ball back into play.
Umpires took a look at the replay but upheld the original call.
``It's been a battle,' said Bay, who had three hits. ``I feel like the last week has been a lot better, and it was nice to get the results and put some wood on some balls and get that confidence and hopefully build off that.'
New York shortstop Jose Reyes went 0 for 5, leaving him with two hits in his last 17 at_bats.
Before the game, Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said Reyes told the team he's not interested in negotiating a new contract during the season. The speedy leadoff man can become a free agent after the World Series.
``We can't ride his back all summer. Some other guys have got to come through,' Collins said.
Looking to ride their luck as long as possible, the A's have been wearing their gold alternate jerseys throughout the winning streak. Equipment manager Steve Vucinich even brought them to New York secretly, hid them away all afternoon and then sprang the surprise after batting practice.
``A bunch of guys were pumped,' Vucinich said. ``Brian Fuentes said he would fly them in on a private jet. He didn't know I already had them here.'
Pennington reached base four times and scored twice, forming a pesky tandem with Weeks at the top of a Punch and Judy lineup. The speedy Weeks walked twice and stole two bases, the latest spark he's provided since getting called up from the minors June 7.
``He's like the little Energizer bunny. That guy just keeps going and going and he battles and he takes good at_bats,' Oakland reliever Grant Balfour said. ``You can just see that he's got a lot of energy and a lot of confidence, and he's a great little player.'
Outman (3-1), who wears No. 88, lived up to his pitcher-perfect name, allowing two runs - one earned - and four hits in six innings while wearing old-school, dark green stirrups stretched high over his yellow socks.
Balfour retired Josh Thole on a bases-loaded grounder to end the eighth, then finished for his second save as the last-place Athletics took the series opener, an interleague rematch of the 1973 World Series.
Reggie Jackson and the A's won that one in seven games for the second of their three straight titles.
Oakland improved to 7-4 under interim manager Bob Melvin, who took over when Bob Geren was fired June 9.
In the offseason, Melvin interviewed for the Mets' managerial job that went to Collins.
NOTES: Bay also made a pair of nice plays in left field. ... Injured Mets 1B Ike Davis (ankle) is scheduled to be re-evaluated Wednesday and 3B David Wright (back) gets checked out on Thursday.
The Associated Press News Service
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