DETROIT -- A's catcher Josh Phegley's two-run triple highlighted a three-run second inning that set the tone on Thursday afternoon as Oakland completed a three-game sweep with a 7-5 win over the Tigers at Comerica Park.
Right-hander Shane Greene allowed six runs (four earned) in 4 1/3 frames as Detroit dropped its seventh game in a row, the club's longest losing streak since 2011. The A's set a new season high with their fourth consecutive victory.
"A lot of good things across the board," said A's manager Bob Melvin. "We played good defense at times. Certainly, the starting pitching was good again. We got some big hits, added on when we needed to. That's our first sweep this year, so it feels good."
The Tigers didn't record their second hit off Oakland starter Jesse Hahn until there were two outs in the sixth inning, at which point three straight singles ended the righty's shutout bid. Hahn limited Detroit's sixth-inning damage to just the one run, though, and finished with five strikeouts and one walk allowed over seven frames.
"It's a combination of [the fact that Hahn's] sinker is a good matchup for right-handed hitters and we're a right-handed lineup, and also the fact that we're not swinging the bats like we normally can," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Early ammo: For the second time in as many days, the A's handed their starter a three-run lead in the second inning. Phegley's first career triple highlighted this one, driving in two runs in support of batterymate Hahn. Billy Butler aided the cause with a pair of RBIs, doubling and singling, and Brett Lawrie added an RBI double in the seventh.
"It was pretty rare when we got an early lead the first two months of the season, and that's key," said Phegley. "The pitching staff gets to calm down a little and just execute pitches, and with the way they've been throwing, our offense has been able to relax and swing the bats."
What a Shane: With runners on first and third and no outs in the second inning, Greene did himself no favors on a tailor-made double-play grounder, making an errant throw to second base that plated Josh Reddick. Phegley drove the next pitch, a hanging slider, for a triple to put the Tigers in an early 3-0 hole.
"I made a mistake there, and I paid for it," Greene said. "I've just got to set a better tempo for the team. We're in a slump right now as a team, and as a starting pitcher, if I go out there and I set a good tempo, it's a lot easier for these guys to get hot with the bats. It's tough when I'm putting them in a hole and then they're trying to climb out of it the whole game." More >
Hahn cruises: Hahn faced just one over the minimum on 64 pitches through his first five innings, and he worked around one baserunner in the seventh to complete seven innings for only the second time in 11 starts this season. He allowed just five hits and lowered his ERA to 3.51. More >
Crushed by Collins: Right fielder Tyler Collins gave what was left of the crowd of 37,411 something to cheer about in the ninth inning. His three-run shot -- the second home run of his career -- brought the Tigers within two, but Detroit's rally fell short when Nick Castellanos and James McCann flied out against A's closer Tyler Clippard to end the game.
"We have some good arms in our starting rotation. It starts with Sonny Gray, and everyone kind of feeds off him." -- Hahn, after A's starters improved to 8-2 with a 1.35 ERA over the last 12 games
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Hahn has allowed only one run over 16 innings over two starts against the Tigers this year. He tossed the first complete game of his career against Detroit on May 25 in Oakland. The righty is 1-5 with a 4.44 ERA against all other teams.
The Athletics avoided committing their 55th error of the season by successfully challenging a play at first base in the fifth inning. First-base umpire Greg Gibson ruled that J.D. Martinez had reached safely when Stephen Vogt was pulled off the bag by Lawrie's errant throw from third base, but a 25-second review overturned the call. Oakland improved to 5-7 on replay challenges.
The Tigers lost Yoenis Cespedes, their cleanup hitter, after two innings when the left fielder was removed due to flu-like symptoms. Cespedes was replaced by 24-year-old prospect Daniel Fields, a Detroit native and the son of hitting coordinator Bruce Fields, who went 1-for-3 with a double, a run scored and a fifth-inning fielding error in his big league debut. More >
Vogt exited in the ninth inning with right leg cramps, which he sustained while chasing a foul pop. Vogt said he hopes to play in Friday's series opener at Boston. More >
WHAT'S NEXT Athletics: The A's will continue their six-game road trip in Boston on Friday, when lefty Scott Kazmir will draw a start against the Red Sox after missing one outing because of left shoulder tightness. Kazmir is 9-8 with a 3.94 ERA in 28 career starts against the Red Sox. First pitch is scheduled for 4:10 p.m. PT at Fenway Park.
Tigers: The Tigers will begin a three-game series Friday night in Chicago against the White Sox. Kyle Ryan, who tossed three innings in relief and earned the win on May 27 in his first Major League action of the year, will start for Detroit. The lefty had a 4.67 ERA in nine starts with Triple-A Toledo this year. First pitch is scheduled for 8:10 p.m. ET at U.S. Cellular Field.