Gonzalez pitches A’s past Indians for first win
July 5, 2009
CLEVELAND – While their embattled manager received some good news, it was another disappointing day for the Cleveland Indians.
Prior to Sunday’s game with Oakland, Indians general manager Mark Shapiro said manager Eric Wedge will keep his job for the rest of the season, even though Cleveland has the worst record in the AL. The announcement came after the Indians recorded consectutive victories for the first time since June 11-12.
The positive news for Wedge ended once the game started. Gio Gonzalez pitched six strong innings for his first win of the season and the Athletics beat the Indians 5-2. The loss sent Cleveland its 50th defeat of the season and the Indians have dropped 14 of 18.
“We’ve had a tough first half,” Wedge said. “My job is to be out front and take the heat. I take full responsibility for all of this.”
Shapiro gave no assurances that Wedge will return for the final year of his contract next season, but for now any question about the manager’s status is gone from the clubhouse.
“He’s a great manager,” said catcher Victor Martinez, the Indians’ only representative for the AL All-Star team. “He’s always been there for us as a team.”
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The day also brought mixed results for Martinez, who grounded out as a pinch-hitter to end the game and is in a 4-for-47 slump.
Most of the day’s good news belong to the Athletics, who avoided being swept in the three-game series between the league’s two worst teams. Gonzalez (1-2) allowed two runs, six hits, and struck out a career-high eight for his second career win and first since Aug. 12 of last season when he defeated Tampa Bay.
Rookie Andrew Bailey, Oakland’s lone representative on the All-Star team, recorded the final four outs for his ninth save in 13 chances, extending his scoreless inning streak to 10 2-3 innings covering nine appearances.