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DiNardo pitching in quite well for A's

July 19, 2007|From the Associated Press

OAKLAND — Lenny DiNardo is proving his worth to the Oakland Athletics while one of the team's most talented pitchers is resting his troublesome shoulder in Canada.

DiNardo pitched seven shutout innings to help the A's end their longest losing streak in nine years with a 6-0 victory over the Texas Rangers on Wednesday.

It was DiNardo's most dominating performance of the season and came in just his second start since replacing Rich Harden in Oakland's rotation after the right-hander was put on the disabled list July 12 because of a strained throwing shoulder.

Harden, who was on the disabled list this season because of similar shoulder problems, is doing his early rehab work in his native Canada.

"I'm not trying to fill Rich's shoes by any means," said DiNardo, who ended a personal two-game losing streak. "When he's on, he's one of the best pitchers in the major leagues. I can strive for that but that's not I'm thinking about."

Bobby Crosby homered and drove in two runs for the A's, who had lost their previous nine games. The losing streak was their longest since 1998 and had dropped them 12 games out of first place in the West Division.

Oakland won despite getting only six hits off Texas starter Kevin Millwood and reliever Willie Eyre. Three of the hits came off Millwood during a four-run second inning, the A's most productive inning since scoring seven runs in the second inning against the New York Yankees on July 1.

DiNardo gave up three hits and walked none. He gave up a pair of doubles and a bunt single but was otherwise untouchable.

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