OAKLAND -- A's manager Bob Melvin and outfielder Josh Reddick have been around long enough to know not to make too much out of one at-bat, one swing.

Yet, Monday offered one of those rare times, when Adam Dunn's two-run home run seemed like so much more. It ignited a five-run first inning that energized the sellout crowd and propelled the A's to a 6-1 victory over the Seattle Mariners.

"We've really been lacking early in games -- energy, runs," Melvin said. "He comes up to the plate, you're thinking to yourself, 'Boy, wouldn't it be something?' And he delivers. So ... you got goose bumps. It was awesome."

Dunn's towering drive in his first at-bat with the A's just cleared the right field fence, but it counted every bit as much as an upper-deck blast.

The A's knocked Mariners starter Chris Young from the game four batters later, cruised the rest of the way and erased from their mouths the bitterness of a four-game sweep at the hands of the first-place Los Angeles Angels.

The A's welcomed Dunn into their locker room Monday morning, a day after he was acquired in a trade with the Chicago White Sox. He ingratiated himself with A's fans a short time later when he launched his home run.

"That's the best crowd I ever played for," said Dunn, who was on base three times in his debut, singling and being hit by a pitch. "I'm serious. It's unbelievable. If it's like that every night here, then it's going to be a fun little ride."


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Reddick was on second base when Dunn batted in the first inning. He said he just remembers a loud sound, a high fly ball and the crowd erupting.

"He got us jump-started," Reddick said. "We all just jumped on that train after he got us going."

Count winning pitcher Jason Hammel among those who is thrilled about Dunn being in an A's uniform. He said he recalls being victimized by Dunn more than once over the years.

On Monday, Dunn worked on Hammel's behalf. The five-run rally allowed Hammel to change his approach after only one inning.

"I'm glad I don't have to face him anymore ... " Hammel said. "He's a presence in the lineup. It changes things. I'm not saying anything bad about our (other) guys right now, but he's a big guy and that's his thing, to hit homers. To connect on that first at-bat, that's big. It's a big confidence booster."

Hammel said the sizable lead enabled him to go after the Mariners. To that end, he relied mainly upon his fastball and slider. He lasted eight innings and allowed only four base runners.

His superb outing lowered his ERA to 2.40 over his past five starts. Hammel started his A's career with an 0-4 record and 9.53 ERA. He attributes the turnaround to the return of his slider.

Oakland Athletics’ Adam Dunn celebrates in the dugout after his two-run home run against the Seattle Mariners during the first inning of a baseball
Oakland Athletics' Adam Dunn celebrates in the dugout after his two-run home run against the Seattle Mariners during the first inning of a baseball game on Monday, Sept. 1, 2014, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez) ( Marcio Jose Sanchez )

"When your slider disappears for a month, you kind of feel naked out there," Hammel said. "That's my go-to (pitch) when I'm in trouble. It finally showed up. I'm throwing it with some confidence."

  • Dunn became the 12th player in Oakland history to hit a home run in his first at-bat with the A's. The last to do it was Josh Willingham in 2011. Dunn's homer was the 461st of his career.

  • The A's snapped a four-game losing streak and avoided matching their longest skid of the season -- they lost five straight in mid-August.

  • The A's activated shortstop Jed Lowrie (finger) from the 15-day disabled list on Monday. Lowrie collected two hits and played flawless defense.

    "He had good at-bats and looked like he had no issues throwing the ball," Melvin said.

  • The A's promoted three players from Triple-A Sacramento -- right-handed pitcher Fernando Rodriguez, outfielder Billy Burns and catcher Bryan Anderson.

    Anderson was acquired Aug. 24 from Cincinnati in a minor league deal. He hit .320 combined in 78 games with Double-A Pensacola, Triple-A Louisville and Sacramento.

  • Melvin said leadoff hitter and center fielder Coco Crisp "felt OK" after he took swings on the field Monday. Crisp is scheduled to get injections in his sore neck Tuesday. His return to the lineup is uncertain.

  • John Jaso (concussion) took swings in the batting cage, Melvin said. His return is uncertain.

  • Closer Sean Doolittle (intercostal muscle strain) might return from the disabled list as soon as he is eligible to do so next week, Melvin said.

    Tuesday's game
    Seattle (James Paxton 4-1) at A's (Sonny Gray 13-7), 7:05 p.m. CSNCA
    A.L. WEST RACE
    W L GB
    Angels 83 53 --
    A's 79 58 4.5

    A.L. WILD CARD
    W L GB
    A's 79 58 --
    Detroit 75 62 --
    Seattle 73 63 1.5
    INSIDE
    Kawakami: Dunn's big swing, and the turn of the calendar, came right on time for A's. PAGE 5