OAKLAND — Marcus Semien homered to back a strong outing by Oakland newcomer Aaron Brooks and the Athletics beat the Cleveland Indians 5-1 on Saturday night to snap a three-game losing streak.
Brooks (1-0) allowed one run and five hits over 7-plus innings for his first career win. The right-hander, who joined Oakland as part of the June 28 trade that sent Ben Zobrist to Kansas City, struck out five and didn’t walk a batter in his first start in more than 14 months.
Billy Butler and Sam Fuld had two hits apiece as the A’s won for just the fifth time since the All-Star break.
Semien’s home run off Cleveland starter Cody Anderson (2-3) in the seventh was his ninth of the season.
Lonnie Chisenhall homered off Brooks in the fifth for the Indians’ lone run.
The A’s had just three hits in the previous two games combined and didn’t get much more against Anderson and three relievers.
They didn’t need it on a night when Brooks pitched the best game of his brief career.
Brooks retired 17 of the first 19 batters and only allowed two runners past first base. He left to a standing ovation in the seventh after getting Mike Aviles to fly out with a runner on first.
That was in stark contrast to Brooks’ only other start on May 31, 2014, when he gave up seven runs and lasted just two-thirds of an inning in a 12-2 loss to Toronto.
Drew Pomeranz retired two batters and Edward Mujica pitched the ninth to complete the five-hitter.
Cleveland had won three straight but struggled offensively.
The Indians also hurt themselves defensively when the A’s scored twice in the fifth on a throwing error by Cleveland first baseman Carlos Santana.
Anderson gave up four runs in 6 2/3 innings. He’s allowed 14 earned runs over his last three starts after giving up only three in his first four outings.
Indians: Manager Terry Francona decided to keep leadoff hitter Jason Kipnis in the designated hitter slot to give him a chance to rest his sore shoulder.
Athletics: LHP Eric O’Flaherty was designated for assignment to make room on the roster for Brooks. O’Flaherty had struggled in his second season with Oakland, going 1-2 with a 5.91 ERA in 25 games. … Closer Sean Doolittle (shoulder strain) threw 31 pitches during a bullpen session. … Newly acquired pitcher Felix Dubrount could be activated Sunday.
Indians: RHP Trevor Bauer (8-8) tries to get back on the winning track after becoming the first Cleveland pitcher since 2009 to throw a complete game at home and lose.
Athletics: RHP Sonny Gray (11-4) pitches the series finale going for his second win against the Indians this season. He blanked Cleveland with a two-hit shutout on July 12.
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