Saturday September 1, 2012

OAKLAND, Calif. -- Brandon Moss had career highs of four hits, four RBI and four runs, Josh Reddick hit his first career grand slam, and the Oakland Athletics routed the Boston Red Sox 20-2 on Friday night to match their best winning streak of the season at seven.

Josh Donaldson homered for the third straight game with a two-run shot and Moss also had a two-run drive to go with a pair of RBI doubles to help back Brandon McCarthy (8-5) with a season high in runs. Reddick connected for his 28th homer in the seventh off Mark Melancon as the A’s scored their most runs since a 23-2 win against Texas on Sept. 30, 2000. They handed the Red Sox their most lopsided loss since a 22-1 defeat to the Yankees on Jun 19, 2000.

The A’s had a season-best 19 hits and scored 20 runs for the fourth time in Oakland history, while Boston allowed 20 for the first time since Aug. 21, 2009, against the Yankees.

George Kottaras had his first career two-homer game with a two-run drive and a solo shot for Oakland (74-57), which matched its win total from 2011 and wrapped up an 18-10 August. The A’s hit a season-high five home runs a day after getting four at Cleveland.

Oakland’s nine-run seventh inning was the club’s biggest since a nine-run frame last July 27 against Tampa Bay.

Jonny Gomes drove in two runs on a night he helped honor the Little League World Series players from his hometown of Petaluma in Northern California’s wine country.

Donaldson added his third RBI on an error in the seventh, but was lifted for pinch-runner Adam Rosales at third after an apparent injury.

McCarthy won back-to-back starts for the first time since June, and it’s good timing with the A’s leading Baltimore by a game in the AL wild-card race heading into the final month. The right-hander missed all of July while on the disabled list for a second time this year nursing a strained throwing shoulder.

Donaldson connected for his fifth home run of the year in Oakland’s four-run second against Aaron Cook (3-8), who also surrendered an RBI double to Moss and run-scoring single by Gomes during the inning.

Cook’s night was over after just 2 2/3 innings to match his shortest outing of the season. The right-hander was tagged for six runs and seven hits and fell to 0-3 over his last four starts.

Jarrod Saltalamacchia hit a two-out solo homer in the fourth for Boston, which lost its fourth straight game after being swept by the Angels in Los Angeles.

Oakland returned from a 6-1 road trip to notch another impressive win on a night when the Petaluma Little Leaguers, third in the Little League World Series, played catch with the A’s on the field before the game and were honored in a pregame ceremony.

While Oakland is expected to activate third Brandon Inge from the disabled list when rosters expand Saturday, manager Bob Melvin will have a tough time taking Donaldson’s hot bat out of the linuep -- as long as he is still healthy. Inge has been on the DL since Aug. 12 with a sprained right shoulder.

Second baseman Cliff Pennington made a great catch on a shallow fly by Jacoby Ellsbury to end the third, sprinting backward to complete the play, then hit an RBI double in the seventh. Stephen Drew also got into the seventh-inning fun with an RBI single. Everybody on the Oakland roster scored.

Dustin Pedroia extended his hitting streak to 11 games with a first-inning single for the new-look Red Sox, who last week sent a handful of former stars to Southern California to join the Los Angeles Dodgers as they try to make a push in the NL West against the first-place San Francisco Giants.