Athletics Red Sox Baseball

Oakland’s Tony Kemp, left, Chad Pinder and Elvis Andrus celebrate a 4-3 win Thursday against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. Mary Schwalm/Associated Press

BOSTON — Paul Blackburn continued his road success by pitching sharply into the sixth inning, Christian Bethancourt hit a two-run single and the Oakland Athletics held off the Boston Red Sox 4-3 Thursday for just their second win in 15 games.

Chad Pinder added an RBI single for Oakland, which closed its nine-game road trip at 2-7 and avoided being swept in a three-game series by Boston for the second time this month.

“Earlier in the day I got a question about this team’s fight,” A’s Manager Mark Kotsay said. “If they didn’t show up and fight today, I don’t know what they did. Long road trip, obviously, not a successful one.”

J.D. Martinez had three singles and drove in a run for Boston. The Red Sox, who had won 11 of 13, left eight runners on in the first four innings and 13 overall.

Boston star Rafael Devers went 0 for 2 with a pair of walks and was hit by a pitch, ending his streak of four straight games with a home run.

With the A’s leading 4-1 in the eighth, Oakland third baseman Jonah Bride made a two-out throwing error that let a run score. Martinez followed with an RBI single that second baseman Tony Kemp stopped with a dive in shallow center, keeping the tying run from scoring.


Blackburn (6-2) gave up a run and eight hits, with four strikeouts and two walks in 5 1/3 innings, slightly increasing his road ERA from 0.91 to 1.00. He entered with the majors’ lowest ERA away from home.

“I am,” he said when asked if he was aware of his road ERA. “There’s just something about coming into a place and quieting a crowd. It’s just what I’ve always enjoyed.

“Playing here, I know the fans are going to be great. I know it’s a huge baseball town, they’re going to have this place packed and people are going to be chirping me in the bullpen. Just being able to hear those comments and kind of prove people wrong, pitching on the road is a different beast in this game.”

Dany Jiménez got four outs for his 11th save.

After scoring just two total runs in the opening two games of the series, the Athletics grabbed a 3-0 edge in the third against Rich Hill (2-4), taking advantage of a gift double when second baseman Trevor Story appeared to call for Cristian Pache’s one-out pop in shallow center but had it fall behind him.

Boston Manager Alex Cora said center fielder Jarren Duran should have called for it.


“We didn’t make a play, that fly ball,” Cora said. “Jarren needs to take charge on that one. … From there, they score the runs.”

Pache scored on Pinder’s single. Bethancourt lined his two-run hit down the left-field line after Ramón Laureano doubled.

Story went 0 for 5 with three strikeouts, dropping his average to .218.

“A little more ups and downs than usual,” he said. “I’m looking forward to being more consistent, for sure.”

Hill allowed four runs, three earned, in 5 2/3 innings.



Cora said a “lot” of guys were going over to TD Garden after the game to watch the Boston Celtics play Golden State in Game 6 of the NBA Finals. He also said Cardinals star Albert Pujols arranged for a luxury box for St. Louis’ players. The Cardinals play at Fenway this weekend.


Red Sox third baseman Devers made a diving grab of Sean Murphy’s liner to open the sixth and followed that by going behind the bag to snag Matt Davidson’s grounder before firing across to first base. But he also had Elvis Andrus’ two-out grounder go through his legs for a run-scoring error.


Athletics: Right fielder Stephen Piscotty (left calf strain) has resumed baseball activities.

Red Sox: Devers was hit on the right elbow by a fastball from A.J. Puk but stayed in the game.

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