OAKLAND — Sonny Gray struck out eight to win his fifth consecutive decision, and the Oakland Athletics pounded the Baltimore Orioles 10-2 on Sunday.
Gray (11-3) gave up two runs, one earned, two hits and two walks in 6 2-3 innings. The 24-year-old right-hander hasn’t lost since June 13 at the New York Yankees.
The major-league best A’s (61-37) overpowered the AL East-leading Orioles (53-44) in the final regular-season meeting between the playoff-contending clubs. Oakland had 15 hits, chasing starter Kevin Gausman (4-3) in the fifth before beating up Baltimore’s bullpen the rest of the way.
Eric O’Flaherty tossed 1 1-3 scoreless innings and Sean Doolittle pitched a perfect ninth to help Oakland finish 4-2 against the Orioles with its most impressive performance of the series.
Oakland’s offense started fast and got contributions from all over the lineup.
Stephen Vogt had three hits and drove in a run. John Jaso tripled, singled and finished with two RBIs. Josh Donaldson had two singles and two RBIs.
Craig Gentry singled twice and had two RBIs. Eric Sogard singled twice after starting the day in a 4-for-35 slump. And two-time reigning Home Run Derby champion Yoenis Cespedes singled and doubled for his first extra-base hit since June 25.
Gausman left after giving up five runs and nine hits in four-plus innings, though he didn’t get much relief. T.J. McFarland allowed two runs — one earned — in the fifth, and Ryan Webb was charged with three runs in two-thirds of an inning.
The Orioles never got going against Gray and managed just three hits in all.
J.J. Hardy’s RBI double in the fifth was Baltimore’s first hit. Nelson Cruz also reached on a throwing error by shortstop Jed Lowrie — one of three throwing errors by A’s infielders — in the seventh before Manny Machado’s RBI single ended Gray’s afternoon.
But Gray and the A’s got the win with the same deep and consistent effort they’ve gotten across the lineup most of the season.
Coco Crisp singled leading off the first and scored on Jaso’s triple, and Jaso crossed the plate after a wild pitch by Gausman to give the A’s a 2-0 lead.
Oakland added another run on a weird blunder by Baltimore in the third, when center fielder Adam Jones — and several Orioles players — started trotting to the dugout after he caught Donaldson’s fly for the second out. Cespedes jogged home from third, and Jones just stopped and dropped his shoulders after realizing his mistake.
Jaso singled to drive in another run in the fourth that extended Oakland’s lead to 4-0.
The A’s added three runs in the fifth, getting help from an throwing error by much-booed Machado at third base, and scored three more in the sixth to take a commanding 10-1 lead.
NOTES: Josh Reddick (strained right knee) could return from his rehabilitation assignment with Triple-A Sacramento when Oakland opens a three-game series against Houston on Tuesday.