Detroit – On a chilly night in the Motor City, Oakland Athletics starter Frankie Montas brought the heat.
The right-hander pitched 8.2 innings, striking out a career-high 10 batters and giving up just two runs and four hits to lead Oakland to a 7-2 win over the Detroit Tigers on Friday night.
The swift victory gave the A’s (21-25) their second road win in a row after entering the series a measly 5-15 away from home and marked the second consecutive outing in which the A’s starting pitcher went longer than eight innings.
Khris Davis got back on track with three hits, a run and an RBI, Stephen Piscotty had two hits, a double and an RBI and Mark Canha and Chad Pinder each homered for Oakland.
Montas kept the Tigers (18-25) stifled early, picking up four strikeouts through two scoreless innings to start the game. Tigers starter Daniel Norris, meanwhile, looked to also be on his game, giving up just one hit — a single to Davis, who was later stranded at third — through three innings.
That’s when the wheels started to wobble on Norris.
Matt Olson broke a scoreless tie in the top of the fourth on a fielder’s choice, beating a double play that would have ended the inning as Matt Chapman scored from third.
The A’s got right back at it the next inning. Jurickson Profar led things off with an eight-pitch leadoff walk to set up Canha for a two-run, opposite-field homer, his second in as many games, to make it 3-1.
Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera broke up Montas’ bid at a no-hitter with a leadoff double in the fifth inning. Two batters later, Josh Harrison brought Cabrera home with an RBI double to make it a two-run game. The Tigers went on to strand runners at the corners.
Just when it looked like the Tigers may be waking up, Oakland came for the throat to start the sixth.
Davis singled on a line drive with one out and Matt Olson drove him home the following at-bat with a single to center that got past Detroit centerfielder Jacoby Jones and allowed Olson to reach third on the error.
Olson’s base position didn’t mean much, however, as Pinder then lifted a hanging slider 437 feet and over the wall in left-center, extending the A’s lead to 6-1 and ending Daniel Norris’ night in the process. Davis added an RBI single in the eighth that scored Stephen Piscotty.
Cabrera tied New York Yankees legend Lou Gehrig for 63rd place on the all-time hit list with 2,721 career hits with a two-out RBI double in the ninth.