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Athletics' roll of runs ends in 7-1 loss to Red Sox

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BOSTON - After scoring 25 runs over three games, Oakland's offence finally stalled.

The Athletics had just five hits and stranded almost every runner that reached base during a 7-1 loss to the Boston Red Sox on Friday night.

The A's didn't have an RBI in the game. The only player to score for Oakland was John Jaso, who came home on a wild pitch in the third inning.

"You're going to have some days when you're not (scoring runs)," manager Bob Melvin said. "We hit some balls hard. We hit a lot of balls hard, actually — right at people and then didn't get some hits when we did have some guys on base."

The A's were able to keep it close until Dustin Pedroia hit a grand slam for his 100th career home run, putting Boston up 6-1 in the sixth inning.

"One swing will break open a game like that. That was the big key to the game, obviously," Melvin said.

The cushion was plenty for Clay Buchholz (2-2), who shut down the team with the top record in the American League. The A's scored 25 runs during a three-game sweep at Texas, but could not break through against Buchholz on Friday.

Buchholz pitched 6 1-3 innings, allowing one run on three hits and striking out five. He walked three and got himself out of several jams as the A's left five on base and were 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position against Buchholz.

Boston was having its own struggles with runners on before Pedroia came through in the sixth off of reliever Ryan Cook. Cook threw two quick strikes, then Pedroia cleared the bases with a shot that just cleared the Green Monster. Melvin challenged whether the ball cleared the yellow line before a fan touched it and lost the appeal.

The milestone homer put him in elite Red Sox company as only the second player in franchise history with 100 home runs and 100 stolen bases. Pedroia, who stole his 121st career base in the first inning, joins Carl Yastrzemski (452 home runs, 168 steals).

Boston hadn't scored since getting a pair of runs in the second inning off starter Dan Straily (1-2).

Straily pitched 4 1-3 innings, allowing two runs on four hits. He struck out three and walked three.

"Anything less than five innings really is just unacceptable. I've got to do better than that. That's really what I'm upset about," Straily said. "I wasn't able to go deep in the ballgame for my team."

Jackie Bradley Jr. ended a potential rally for the A's in the eighth with a leaping catch at the centre field wall, then hitting Pedroia with a strong relay throw. Pedroia threw to Mike Napoli as Josh Donaldson scrambled to get back after rounding second before seeing Bradley make the catch.

Notes: The series continues Saturday afternoon with Boston LHP Jon Lester (2-4) scheduled to face Oakland lefty Tommy Milone (0-2). .. Oakland played its first game in May after tying the franchise record for wins in April at 18-9. ... Buchholz allowed 12 runs on 20 hits over 6 2-3 innings in his first two starts at Fenway Park this season. ... Boston rookie SS Xander Bogaerts has reached safely in 14 straight games. ... Boston C A.J. Pierzynski was played his 1,700th career game behind the plate. ... Pedroia could catch Yastrzemski's steal total of 168, but Yaz's 452 homers are probably out of reach for Boston's pesky second baseman.

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