OAKLAND — No walk-off magic was needed Wednesday for the A's to polish off a three-game sweep and keep the Detroit Tigers' season spiraling south.
Just about everything went right for the home team in a 10-2 drubbing of the Tigers on a sun-drenched afternoon at McAfee Coliseum. And the one thing that could have gone terribly wrong turned out not all that bad after all.
Starting pitcher Justin Duchscherer was nailed on the left forearm by a line drive from Carlos Guillen in the top of the sixth inning, and his demonstrative reaction let the crowd of 19,258 know exactly how painful it was.
After being checked out by the training staff, Duchscherer remained in the game and eventually extinguished Detroit's two-run rally with an inning-ending double play that kept the A's ahead 3-2.
"It didn't break anything. It hit me in a decent spot," said Duchscherer, sporting a wrap around his wrist and lower arm to reduce swelling. "When it hit me, it hurt pretty good. My first thought was, 'I hope I didn't break my arm.' "
The A's turned a competitive game into a laugher with a six-run seventh, the second time in four games they've batted around in an inning.
Duchscherer shook off his injury and lasted 62/3 innings despite walking a career-high five. His team, it turns out, is showing some resiliency of its own.
The A's have won four straight on the heels of a four-game losing streak. That follows a stretch in which they rebounded from a 2-7 road trip in mid-May and rattled off a five-game winning streak.
They're 33-27 and sit 3½ games behind of the AL West-leading Los Angeles Angels, who arrive Friday for the start of a three-game series.
"It shows a lot of character for a team to lose four or five in a row and then win four or five in a row," Duchscherer said.
The A's won Monday night on Bobby Crosby's walk-off single and stole another win Tuesday when Jack Cust beat out an infield dribbler in the bottom of the 11th.
Wednesday required less drama.
Crosby, hitting cleanup with Eric Chavez taking the day off, delivered a two-run double with two outs in the fifth to put the A's ahead 3-0.
After Detroit closed to within 3-2, Travis Buck answered with a solo homer in the bottom of the sixth.
Then the A's poured it on in the seventh, scoring all six runs with five straight two-out hits. The big blow was Carlos Gonzalez's three-run double.
Gonzalez was 0-for-11 in the series before taking a slider from Casey Fossum and slicing it to left-center with the bases loaded. The A's top prospect became the first player in Oakland history to record five doubles for his first five career hits.
Promoted from Triple-A Sacramento on Friday when the A's were in Texas, Gonzalez has enjoyed his first regular-season games in front of the home fans.
"It's a lot different than the minor leagues, a lot better than I thought," he said. "I'm enjoying my time here. Hopefully I get to play for this team a long time. There's a lot of history with this team. I want to be a part of it."
Things weren't as cheery in the other clubhouse. Tigers manager Jim Leyland blasted his team's sputtering offense after Tuesday's game, and Wednesday's rout provided him more fodder.
"It looked like we were swinging our bats under water," Leyland said. "I am very disappointed in our offense. Our offense stunk, basically. I'm befuddled about it."
Duchscherer (5-4), in his first season as a major league starter, leads the A's rotation in victories to go with a 2.32 ERA. He joined with Alan Embree, Brad Ziegler and Kiko Calero to hold Detroit to four hits.
Contact Joe Stiglich at firstname.lastname@example.org.