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A’s take 2 of 3 from Giants

By GREG BEACHAM, The Associated Press
Monday June 17, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — Barry Zito pitched into the seventh inning for his eighth straight victory, and Adam Piatt drove in the go-ahead run as the Oakland Athletics won the Bay Bridge series, beating the San Francisco Giants 2-1 Sunday. 

Oakland took two of three on the weekend from its cross-bay rival with another outstanding performance from Zito (9-2), who gave up four hits and struck out five in 6 2-3 innings, pitching out of big jams in the fifth and sixth. 

Randy Velarde hit his 100th career homer for the A’s, who won for the ninth time in 10 games. 

Oakland’s bullpen also got the job done, particularly when Chad Bradford intentionally walked Barry Bonds with nobody on base in the eighth. Bradford then got Jeff Kent to ground into an inning-ending double play. 

Billy Koch pitched the ninth for his 15th save. 

The A’s improved the majors’ best interleague record to 58-37 with their eighth win in nine interleague games this season. San Francisco still holds a 15-14 edge in the rivalry between the teams, who meet again at the Coliseum in two weeks. 

David Bell homered off Zito in the second, but the Giants didn’t do enough to help Kirk Rueter (7-5), who allowed nine hits in seven innings. Rueter has lost four of his last five after a 6-1 start. 

Piatt’s fifth-inning single brought home Terrence Long with Oakland’s second run. It was part of the A’s only prolonged rally against Rueter, but Reggie Sanders threw out Velarde at home to end it. 

The A’s won despite a miserable day on the basepaths. Long, Velarde and Eric Chavez all were thrown out trying to take an extra base. 

Oakland’s franchise-record streak of 12 straight errorless games ended in the fifth inning, when Zito overthrew first base after Rueter’s sacrifice bunt. But Zito, who hasn’t lost since April 30, got out of that trouble, then survived the sixth after walking Bonds and Kent to open the inning. 

Even Bonds had no luck against Zito’s curveball, going 0-for-2. Later, he disgustedly went to first when Bradford intentionally walked him in the eighth, but Kent tapped into a double play.