OAKLAND -- After losing two of three to the last-place Mariners, the A's desperately needed to get back on track. Lucky for them, the Baltimore Orioles were coming to town.
Oakland finished off a three-game sweep of the league-worst Orioles with an 8-3 win Wednesday afternoon. For the series, the A's outscored the O's 27-7.
The question now is whether Oakland can build off this momentum and go on an extended run.
"We'd like to be able to sustain it," said manager Bob Melvin. "We had the one 10-game winning streak where everything was hitting on all cylinders and we were playing really well, and then we couldn't follow it up. We lost five in a row after that. So we have to sustain it."
To this point, it has been a roller coaster of a season for the Green and Gold. Every time the A's seem poised to push well past the .500 mark, they have stumbled.
"We're a team of runs so far this year, which is kind of weird," said Wednesday's starting pitcher Chris Bassitt. "I feel like we lose a couple and then win a whole bunch. We've just got to maintain this and maintain consistent work every single day -- don't really go to the extremes of pressing. We're a great team."
The A's have failed to climb more than four games over .500 all season, achieving that mark on May 27 with a record of 29-25. Now at 39-36, they'll have a chance to push past that hurdle with the Tampa Bay Rays visiting the Coliseum for a four-game weekend series.
"Just keep playing our game," said catcher Josh Phegley. "I think we put pressure on ourselves to do well sometimes and I felt like we just were comfortable this series and kind of trusted that our offense was going to be there. Our pitchers kept us in the game. They gave us some good starts. I feel like that's just kind of a confidence-builder."
Designated hitter Khris Davis agreed with Phegley's assessment.
"Absolutely. It gives us momentum and we want to hold onto that."
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Of course, last season the A's went on a remarkable run right around this time, finishing the season 63-29 after starting 34-36. While that type of stretch will be difficult to repeat, the team knows it has that capability.
"We've been on some runs before with this group of guys, so I know they're looking forward to getting as many games over .500 as we can," Melvin said. "We have a really tough team coming in, and we've got them for four, so we're going to have to play well."