OAKLAND, Calif. — Ryan Raburn homered in his first two at-bats, Edwin Jackson pitched six strong innings and the Detroit Tigers beat the Oakland Athletics 3-2 on Friday night.
Clete Thomas also drove in a run for the Tigers, who won for the sixth time in eight games to take a 3-game lead over the Chicago White Sox in the AL Central.
Jack Cust and Rajai Davis each had two hits and drove in a run for the A's, who have lost five of seven. Ryan Sweeney added a pair of hits.
Raburn hit solo home runs his first two times up to put Detroit on top. It was his second career multihomer game and his first in over two years.
Jackson (10-5) allowed two runs on six hits, striking out five and walking one in winning his third straight decision. He's allowed two runs or less in nine of his 14 road starts. The All-Star pitcher is 4-1 over his last 11 starts. His 2.80 road ERA is third in the AL.
Jackson did not allow a home run for the first time in nine games. Bobby Seay and Brandon Lyon got the Tigers through eight and Fernando Rodney pitched the ninth for his 26th save in 27 games.
A's Gio Gonzalez (4-4) allowed three runs on four hits, walking four and striking out a career-high nine.
Tigers manager Jim Leyland switched the top of his lineup, giving Placido Polanco his second start at the leadoff spot and Raburn his second start in the third position.
Raburn responded to the move with two-out home runs in the first and third, the second snapping a 1-1 tie. He has three homers in his last two games.
Thomas singled home a run in the sixth.
Cust singled home a run in the second for the A's, while Davis doubled home a run in the seventh.
Notes: Tigers RHP Joel Zumaya underwent arthroscopic surgery to remove bone chips in his right shoulder. ... A's RHP Justin Duchscherer will miss the season to concentrate on treatment for clinical depression. ... Tigers' LHP Dontrelle Willis had X-rays to determine the extent of damage on a sore hip. ... A's INF Bobby Crosby was placed on the DL with a strained left calf and 1B Daric Barton was activated from the DL. ... Gonzalez did not win for the first time when the game time temperature was 72 degrees or higher. ... A's 2B Mark Ellis played his 806th game at the position, moving him into fifth all-time in franchise history. ... Raburn hit two home runs on July 25, 2007.