JP Sears continued his run of encouraging starts, but a big finish again eluded the Oakland A’s on Thursday night in a 3-2 loss to the Seattle Mariners at T-Mobile Park.
The loss capped a winless trip for the A’s, who went 0-7 and return to the Coliseum to face the defending World Series champion Houston Astros starting Friday night.
The A’s, who have lost eight in a row overall, started the trip by being swept in Houston. The team’s 10-42 record matches the 1932 Boston Red Sox for the worst 52-game start since 1901, and its .192 win percentage projects to a 31-131 mark that would easily be the worst for a major league team since the 1899 Cleveland Spiders went 20-134.
The reeling A’s have dropped 16 of 18 overall and been swept in seven series this season.
Oakland were off to an encouraging start when Seth Brown hit a two-run home run four batters into the game. But the A’s managed just one more baserunner the rest of the game off starter Logan Gilbert (3-2) and reliever Paul Sewald.
Sears allowed one run and three hits over five innings, and turned a 2-1 lead over to the bullpen. But Ty France, who homered off of Sears in the fifth, tied the score an inning later with a home run off Trevor May. France was back in the lineup after taking a fastball from May off his left hand Tuesday.
France reached in the eighth on a fielder’s choice and went to third on Julio Rodríguez’s two-out double off reliever Garrett Acton. After an intentional walk to Jarred Kelenic loaded the bases, Eugenio Suárez drew a bases-loaded walk from Acton to push across the go-ahead run.
Sears is winless in 10 starts this season, but completed an encouraging May. He allowed two or fewer runs in four of his five starts in the month, but the A’s scored three or fewer runs in all five and lost them all.
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— Paul Blackburn (finger) was back with the A’s after starting at Tacoma for Triple-A Las Vegas on Wednesday. Oakland manager Mark Kotsay said Blackburn will fly back to Oakland and there’s a good chance the A’s lone 2022 All-Star will be back in the rotation soon.
— James Kaprielian will start Friday against the visiting Astros. Kaprielian is 0-4 with an 8.64 ERA this season, with 30 strikeouts and 19 walks over 28 innings.
Check back for more on this developing story.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.