The hitting woes continued Sunday for the A's, who managed just three singles in an 8-1 loss to Tampa Bay, finishing off a three-game sweep for the Rays.
In losing three consecutive times for the first time in 2013, the A's managed just four runs, two of those in the first inning of the first game. It wasn't what was expected of a team that came into the series leading the majors with an average of six runs per game, but it's what happens when a team goes 3-for-27 with runners in scoring position for the series.
Oakland starting pitcher Tommy Milone didn't have his best game, but two of the three runs he allowed in the first inning were unearned after right fielder Josh Reddick dropped a routine fly ball in short right field.
Milone had runners on second and third and one out when Reddick dropped the ball, bringing in the game's first run. Milone then loaded the bases, hit a batter and surrendered a sacrifice fly to Kelly Johnson as Tampa took a 3-0 lead en route to going went wire-to-wire.
It was also Reddick who produced the first hit of the game for Oakland in the fifth inning, and that hit scored Seth Smith from third base with the only A's run.
Unlike Saturday, when the A's mounted no credible offensive threats in a 1-0 loss, there were many chances for the A's to break loose against Rays' starter Roberto Hernandez, who threw six innings, and the Rays' bullpen.
Oakland put the leadoff man on base five different innings, each time getting the runner at least to second base. Still, the A's wound up leaving at least two men on base in the fourth, fifth and seventh innings. More than that, the A's had just one hit, Reddick's hard ground single off the glove of second baseman Ryan Roberts, in 13 at-bats with runners in scoring position.