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Oakland tries to rebound in second test with Angels

(Sports Network) - The Oakland Athletics knew they weren't going to win them all.

The AL West leaders hope to rebound on Tuesday night when they play the second contest of a three-game series with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

The Athletics came into the opener having won five straight, including a three-game sweep of Texas that pushed their edge over the second-place Rangers in the division to 6 1/2 games. Oakland maintained that edge despite last night's loss as Texas lost to Tampa Bay, and saw its magic number to clinch the division reduced to seven.

After having his scheduled start on Sunday versus Texas scratched due to illness, Jarrod Parker took the mound one day later but was drilled for eight runs -- seven earned -- over just 4 1/3 innings in a 12-1 setback. He entered the outing the owner of a 19-start unbeaten streak, the longest in Oakland history and the longest by an A's pitcher since Lefty Grove's 21-start run in 1931.

"I can either dwell on it or move on," Parker said. "Early in the game it felt like forever since I've been out there. It wasn't very good execution. Not very many of my pitches were down in the zone, not even my off-speed stuff."

The A's had won 16 of their previous 20, while the Angels picked up their third straight win and sixth in their last seven. The disappointing club is looking to finish strong, having won 18 of 24, but is still 8 1/2 games back of a wild car spot.

Mark Trumbo and Mike Trout homered and also drove in three runs each for the Angels, as did Kole Calhoun.

Starter C.J. Wilson allowed one run on four hits while striking out six over seven innings. The left-hander won his fourth straight start, ninth consecutive decision and won his career-high 17th game of the season.

"There is no doubt this year has filled us with a lot of frustration," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "This last month gives us a lot of hope looking forward to some of our kids that are playing well. Some of the things we've been looking to take place and be in place during the season."

Scioscia will start Garrett Richards tonight and the righty has won all three of his starts in September with a 2.41 earned run average. He held Toronto to three runs over 6 2/3 innings of a 4-3 victory last Thursday.

The 25-year-old righty is 0-1 with a 4.11 ERA in six career meetings with the A's, including two starts. Both of those have come this year as Richards was hammered for seven runs over 5 2/3 innings of a loss on April 30.

He was better in a rematch on July 27, logging five scoreless frames without a decision.

The A's turn to rookie Sonny Gray tonight and he has gone 3-3 with a 2.63 ERA in nine games this year, including seven starts. He has given up more than two earned runs in just one of those starts while posting a 1.83 ERA over his last three.

The right-handed Gray is coming off an 18-3 win over Minnesota. He gave up two runs on four hits and three walks over five innings, striking out seven for a third start in a row.

Gray, 23, will make his first start versus the Angels, but did face them in relief on July 19, hurling two scoreless innings.

The Athletics have won nine of 14 versus the Angels this season.

09/17 10:57:57 ET