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AMERICAN LEAGUE Tribe breaks up Halama's no-hitter, but Oakland pulls away for 6-3 win



Published: Wed, April 30, 2003 @ 12:00 a.m.



Brandon Phillips had a seventh-inning single for Cleveland's first hit.

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- John Halama knew he had a no-hitter going but didn't want to spend any time thinking about it.

Halama held Cleveland hitless until the seventh inning and Erubiel Durazo hit a tiebreaking sacrifice fly to lead the Oakland Athletics over the Indians 6-3 Saturday.

Brandon Phillips singled with one out in the seventh for the Indians' first hit. Halama carried a no-hit bid deeper than any major league pitcher this season.

"Why waste a thought process on something you have no control over?" said Halama. "When I went out for the seventh I still had nine outs left. I'm just thinking about throwing the ball over the plate and getting guys out."

Halama, however, did not get the decision. He was gone by the time the A's scored the go-ahead in the seventh off Terry Mulholland (0-1).

Scott Hatteberg singled and went to third when catcher Tim Laker threw the ball away at second on Miguel Tejada's tapper. Reliever Carl Sadler struck out Eric Chavez, then gave up Durazo's sacrifice fly.

"I thought that was a poor decision by Tim," said Indians manager Eric Wedge. "He got really aggressive there and that play really hurt us."

The Indians lost their season-high fifth in a row.

Strong pitching

Chad Bradford (2-2) got the win with 12/3 scoreless innings. Keith Foulke pitched the ninth for his sixth save in seven opportunities.

Cleveland starter Jake Westbrook allowed three runs over seven innings as the Indians matched their worst start since 1979 at 7-17.

"Their lineup is so good it's frustrating when you pitch well and they still hit the ball," said Westbrook.

Halama, who threw the first nine-inning perfect game in Pacific Coast League history in 2001, used 97 pitches to get through the first 61/3 innings. He struck out four and recorded 10 outs on grounders.

He left the game to a standing ovation after giving up consecutive hits in the seventh.

Halama's previous longest outing of the season came when he went 52/3 innings in a victory over the Anaheim Angels on April 5.

"Halama did an outstanding job," said A's manager Ken Macha. "It's too bad he didn't get the win for how well he pitched."

The A's broke a 1-1 tie with a pair of runs in the sixth. Eric Byrnes singled home one run and Chris Singleton, who had three hits, followed with an RBI double.

Halama walked John McDonald to lead off the third. The Indians scored an unearned run when Karim Garcia's grounder to first base was mishandled by Hatteberg.

The A's tied it in the fifth when Singleton doubled and Mark Ellis singled him home.

The Indians scored twice in the seventh to make it 3-all. Both runs scored on pinch-hitter Bill Selby's misplayed grounder to first.

Hatteberg field the ball cleanly, but Bradford dropped the throw while covering first base.

Ellis and Tejada both singled home runs in the eighth.

CLEVELANDOAKLAND

abrhbiabrhbi

Vizquel ss3000MEllis 2b5022

Blake 1b3000Httberg 1b4120

Selby ph1001Tejada ss4021

Hafner 1b1000EChavz 3b4000

Burks dh3000Durazo dh2111

KGarca rf3000Long rf4110

Spncer lf3000Byrnes lf4021

Gerut cf4000Snglton cf4231

Laker c3000MLJhn c3110

BPhllps 2b4110

JMcDld 3b3220

Totals31331Totals346146

Cleveland001000200--3

Oakland00001212x--6

E--Laker (1), Hatteberg (1), Bradford (1). DP--Cleveland 4. LOB--Cleveland 9, Oakland 10. 2B--Byrnes (1), Singleton 2 (7). S--Vizquel. SF--Durazo.

IPHRERBBSO

Cleveland

Westbrook5 2-373331

Mulholland L,0-11-321010

CSadler1 1-322201

JSantiago2-330000

Oakland

Halama6 1-323144

Rincon000010

Bradford W,2-21 2-300001

Foulke S,6110001

Mulholland pitched to 2 batters in the 7th, Rincon pitched to 1 batter in the 7th. HBP--by Bradford (KGarcia), by Westbrook (Tejada), by Halama (JMcDonald). Balk--Halama. Umpires--Home, Marvin Hudson; First, Greg Gibson; Second, Jerry Layne; Third, Dana DeMuth. T--3:00. A--36,346.




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