Like fellow A's staff member Tom Milone, Jarrod Parker has pitched much better in Oakland than on the road.
But, unlike Milone, Parker was fabulous against the Rockies in Colorado. Keeping Rockies hitters off balance over seven shutout innings, Parker struck out six and Brandon Moss' two-run double keyed the A's' 8-2 victory and their first three-game sweep of 2012.
Moss also hit a solo homer in the ninth to finish the series 6 for 13 with four home runs and eight RBI as he makes a serious case for the full-time first base position.
Josh Reddick added a solo home run in the eighth inning to make the score 5-0. With his 15th long ball of the year, Reddick has more home runs than all A's right fielders in 2011 combined (13).
Coco Crisp also had three hits, including an RBI single in the ninth. Cliff Pennington's RBI single closed out the scoring as the A's smacked 14 hits.
Oakland got on the board in the second inning when, after a Moss double and Kurt Suzuki single, Colorado third baseman Jordan Pacheco airmailed Adam Rosales' ground ball, allowing Moss and Suzuki to score. Moss then doubled in the fourth to deep right field, scoring Reddick and Seth Smith.
But the story was Jarrod Parker, who bounced back after a shaky start in Arizona. Of his 89 pitches, 60 were for strikes and the Rockies never seriously threatened to score against him. Parker would strike out six and only walk a single batter (Dexter Fowler).
Good: Jarrod Parker. It is tempting to put Brandon Moss here and it would be well deserved. But after giving up 13 runs in two games, Parker's performance in completely shutting down the Rockies was a thing of beauty. It will be nice to see if he can build on this outing going forward in road games.
Parker and Milone will have to be better away from the Coliseum for the A's to get back in the wild-card race. Today was a great start.
Bad: Brian Fuentes. Another appearance, another long ball.
In an inning of mop-up duty, he allowed the only two runs of the game, giving up three hits and throwing more balls than strikes. His ERA is now a shade under six. About the only other thing that was bad about today is the fact that the A's have to leave Denver.
The bats came to life, and a sweep is just what the doctor ordered as the team starts a key nine-game homestand.
With the win and the sweep, the A's improved to 29-35 and will look to build on the momentum when they begin a three-game series against the San Diego Padres in Oakland. Travis Blackley will face off against San Diego's Anthony Bass, Friday evening.
First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.