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Milone roughed up in A’s loss to Blue Jays

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POSTED August 5, 2012 10:14 p.m.

OAKLAND (AP) — Tommy Milone has given up more runs in his last 12 innings at home than he allowed in his first 60 innings in Oakland. He thinks it is just a bad run, and the Athletics hope he is right.

Edwin Encarnacion hit a two-run homer, Yunel Escobar also drove in two runs, and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Athletics 6-5 on Sunday to salvage a series split.

Milone has yielded 11 runs and 15 hits in his past two starts, both in Oakland. He had given up six runs over his first eight starts.

“He’s not pitching as well as he has earlier in the game, but he wasn’t bad,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said. “He’s been pretty consistent for us all year.”

Encarnacion’s two-run shot in the fourth inning was just the second homer Milone has allowed at home, and the first since May 27 when Andruw Jones of the New York Yankees went deep in the second inning.

“That was supposed to be a fastball in but I missed over the plate,” Milone said. “I’ve been doing that a lot lately. I couldn’t get the one big pitch I needed.”

Milone, approaching a career high in innings pitched, doesn’t think fatigue has anything to do with it.

“I still feel strong,” he said. “Something is just a little off in my delivery, and the ball is sailing up in the zone.”

Josh Reddick hit a three-run home run for the A’s, who are 2-3 in August after going 19-5 in July. Coco Crisp and Derek Norris both doubled home a run for the A’s.

Milone (9-9) lost his third straight start and is 1-3 in his last seven.

“I just haven’t felt as sharp in the last couple of starts,” Milone said.

The Blue Jays recorded their best offensive output in 10 games. Toronto averaged just under two runs a game in their previous eight.

Norris’ double in the second scored Brandon Inge with the tying run. Reddick’s three-run shot into the right field bleachers put the A’s ahead 4-1 in the third.

“A couple of plays here and there cost us,” Melvin said.

Encarnacion’s 29th home run closed the gap to 4-3, and Toronto took the lead in the fifth when five hitters reached base after two outs. Escobar’s two-run single and Johnson’s RBI single were the key hits.

“We have been struggling the past couple of games,” Encarnacion said. “That homer gave everybody a little more emotion, and everybody started hitting better.”

Adam Rosales doubled with one out in the seventh and scored on Crisp’s double to make it 6-5.

NOTES: A’s RHP A.J. Griffin went on the DL with a strained right shoulder. ... Oakland OF Michael Taylor was optioned to Triple-A Sacramento. ... The A’s recalled left-hander Pedro Figueroa and right-hander Evan Scribner from Sacramento. ... Blue Jays RHP Carlos Villanueva left the team for personal reasons. Toronto RHP Jesse Chavez was optioned to Triple-A Las Vegas. ... LHP J.A. Happ will move up to start Tuesday’s game for the Blue Jays. ... Toronto also selected RHP Chad Jenkins from Double-A New Hampshire. ... The A’s are 14-6 in one-run games at home.

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