BALTIMORE (AP) - The Baltimore Orioles had a chance to go six games over .500 for the first time in nearly seven years. Oakland's Brandon McCarthy wouldn't let it happen.
The Orioles got only five hits in seven innings off McCarthy, and managed to strike out four times in the eighth inning off Ryan Cook in their 5-2 loss to the Athletics on Friday night.
``We didn't do much off McCarthy. I think that was a big part of it,' Orioles manager Buck Showalter.
They had three doubles and a single as they watched their four-game winning streak end.
Oakland scored four runs off Jake Arrieta in 5 2-3 innings, and added a fifth run in the eighth.
``He had his chance to win tonight. He wasn't as good as he's capable of, but if we score a few more runs and see if he can get in a rhythm,' Showalter said.
Since Arrieta allowed just two hits in the Orioles' Opening Day win three weeks ago, he's lost twice and had two no-decisions.
``Just gotta throw the ball down in the zone and not allow those guys to sit on certain pitches today, showing I wasn't very crisp, didn't have many off-speed pitches to go to,' Arrieta said. ``Still had usable pitches, just wasn't able to throw them for strikes.'
Oakland has won three straight for the second time this season and moved a game over .500 for the first time since May 18.
In McCarthy's first five starts, the Athletics scored 10 combined runs.
McCarthy (1-3) gave up two runs and five hits, walked three and struck out four. Cook struck out four Orioles in the eighth inning, with Adam Jones reaching on a wild pitch.
``That was awesome. I was glad to be a part of that,' Jones said sarcastically. ``It doesn't happen often, but it happens. You just try not to be part of it again.'
Grant Balfour worked the ninth for his sixth save in seven chances.
The Orioles took a 1-0 lead when Nolan Reimold led off the first with a double off McCarthy to increase his hitting streak to 12 games. He scored on a sacrifice fly by Nick Markakis.
Oakland took a 3-1 lead in the top of the second off Arrieta. Kila Ka'aihue walked with one out, and scored on a two-out double by Kurt Suzuki. Eric Sogard, who was inserted into the lineup because Luke Hughes was scratched because of illness, hit a home run to right field - his second.
In the sixth, Josh Reddick homered to right for the Athletics - his third of the year - to make it 4-1. It was his sixth home run in 24 games against the Orioles. Reddick added an RBI single in the eighth.
Before the home run, Arrieta (1-2) had retired nine straight.
Baltimore scored a run in the sixth on a double by J.J. Hardy and an RBI single by Jones, who was frustrated by McCarthy.
``That's the key around baseball, throwing strike one. Successful pitchers do that and tonight he was throwing strike one and made us put the ball in play. We lined balls out, just missed the ball, but he pitched a good game,' Jones said.
NOTES: Athletics OF Coco Crisp stole his 26th consecutive base in the eighth inning. ... Orioles RHP Jim Johnson returned to the team after spending four nights at a local hospital because of food poisoning. ... Baltimore reinstated INF Robert Andino from the paternity list and optioned RHP Jason Berken to Triple-A Norfolk. ... Home plate umpire Jeff Kellogg tackled a fan who ran onto the field during the seventh inning stretch and eluded police. When the fan slid into home plate, Kellogg pounced on him. ... The Orioles have scheduled LHP Wei-Yin Chen (1-0, 2.60) for Saturday against RHP Tyson Ross (1-0, 2.13).
The Associated Press News Service
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