Chris Bassitt pitched a two-hitter for his first career complete game, Sean Murphy hit a two-run single in the decisive sixth inning and the Oakland Athletics took advantage after Bay Area traffic kept Shohei Ohtani off the mound for a 5-0 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Thursday night.
Bassitt (5-2) struck out nine and walked one to beat the Angels in back-to-back outings after a win Saturday in Anaheim, allowing just two runs in 7 2/3 innings. He completed this gem in 114 pitches, improving to 1-2 over five starts at home this year.
He allowed a one-out double in the ninth to Justin Upton then recovered to finish it in 2 hours, 59 minutes with Lou Trivino warming up in the bullpen.
Matt Chapman and Elvis Andrus also had run-scoring singles while Tony Kemp added a sacrifice fly in the five-run sixth in an interesting opener to the four-game series.
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Everything changed quickly some 2 1/2 hours before first pitch.
Ohtani moved from the mound to designated hitter after his arrival to the ballpark got delayedwhen he was forced to take BART public transportation because of an accident on the Bay Bridge that held up the team bus.
Manager Joe Maddon inserted Ohtani as designated hitter and went with well-rested Patrick Sandoval, who allowed five five hits over five scoreless innings with four strikeouts and two walks.
Aaron Slegers (2-2) relieved and gave up Chapman's RBI single to break up a scoreless game before Murphy gave Bassitt a nice cushion.
Ohtani, who hit his 15th home run Tuesday against Texas, went 0 for 3 with a walk and a strikeout.
Mitch Moreland came off the injured list from a stint with an inflamed rib and had been set to start for Oakland before the Ohtani switch meant the A's faced a lefty starter rather than a right-hander.
The A's announced they will begin hosting fans at full capacity beginning June 29 against Texas. There will be a fireworks show July 2 after a game against the Red Sox. Thursday's game drew 5,487.
Angels: Maddon also scratched C Kurt Suzuki, who was traveling with Ohtani. The Angels want him to catch the two-way Japanese star Friday night when he pitches instead.
Athletics: LHP Jesús Luzardo, recovering from a hairline fracture in his pitching pinkie sustained playing video games, allowed one hit and struck out one over 1 2/3 innings, throwing 25 pitches as planned in his first rehab start for Triple-A Las Vegas on Thursday night. ... LHP A.J. Puk (strained left biceps) — who surrendered a homer in the sixth inning pitching in relief with Las Vegas while striking out three Tuesday night — will likely build up to pitching a couple of innings out of the bullpen before rejoining the A's, though manager Bob Melvin didn't yet know the formal plan for Puk's next step.
The A's optioned OF Luis Barrera to Triple-A to clear roster room for Moreland's return.
LHP Sean Manaea (3-2, 4.17 ERA) pitches for the A's trying to end a five-start winless stretch in which he's 0-1 and will start opposite Ohtani (1-0, 2.37) making his seventh appearance of the season on the mound. He is 2-1 with a 5.54 ERA in three previous starts against the A’s.
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