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A's reach .500 mark with 20-run outburst vs. Marlins

Thearon W. Henderson / Getty Images Sport / Getty

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Brent Rooker became the first Oakland player in nearly 30 years to homer twice in an inning, accomplishing the feat in the third inning to help the Athletics pound the Miami Marlins 20-4 on Saturday for their sixth consecutive victory.

The Athletics only All-Star a year ago, Rooker drilled a two-run drive off Marlins starter Trevor Rogers (0-5), then added a three-run shot off Darren McCaughan in the 10-run inning.

"That's Rook, we (saw) it last year," A's manager Mark Kotsay said. "He gets hot and he hits mistakes. He got a couple today."

Oakland set season highs for runs and hits with 21.

Rooker, who also singled in the sixth, is the 60th player in major league history to homer twice in an inning. Trea Turner of Philadelphia was the most recent to do it, reaching the milestone Aug. 19. The last A's player to do it was Mark McGwire against Seattle on Sept. 22, 1996.

"I grew up in Memphis a big (St. Louis) Cardinals fan so he was kind of one of the first players I remember watching during his time there," Rooker said. "Being able to do anything the same as him is a huge accomplishment and something that's really cool for me."

Brett Harris also homered twice for Oakland, a day after making his major league debut. The home runs were Harris' first hits in the majors and came with his parents and fiancee among those in attendance. JJ Bleday and Shea Langeliers added three-run home runs in the game delayed nearly 3 1/2 hours by rain.

Paul Blackburn (3-1) benefited from all the offense, though he hardly needed it. He retired the first 10 batters and allowed one run and four hits over seven innings.

"Just trying to create some early contact and get those bats back in the dugout," Blackburn said.

The Athletics (17-17) have been one of the best stories in baseball after losing 112 games in 2023. Oakland — which didn't win its 17th game last season until June 12 — reached .500 after beginning the year 1-7.

"You're seeing a group that has some confidence right now," Kotsay said. "Those are all things that I really I felt this group could accomplish. Maybe it's come together a little bit sooner but those are good signs."

Bryan De La Cruz and Nick Fortes homered for the Marlins. Rogers allowed seven runs and eight hits in 2 1/3 innings.


Athletics: Left fielder Esteury Ruiz was shaken up and left the game with a left wrist injury after making a diving catch to rob Bryan De La Cruz of a hit in the sixth inning.


Athletics RHP Joe Boyle (2-4, 6.08 ERA) was set to start the series finale Sunday against RHP Sixto Sánchez (0-1, 8.36).