|12:37 PM PT1:37 PM MT2:37 PM CT3:37 PM ET15:37 ET19:37 GMT3:37 12:37 PM MST2:37 PM EST3:07 PM VEN23:37 UAE2:37 PM CT, May 9, 2019
Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, Oakland, California Attendance: 19,694
A's aim for three-game sweep of Reds
It took Stephen Piscotty 511 major league games to deliver his first walk-off hit.
And because that drought is over, the Oakland Athletics are in position to sweep a three-game set from the visiting Cincinnati Reds when the series concludes Thursday afternoon.
The Athletics lost eight of nine games before notching back-to-back dramatic victories over the Reds. Mike Fiers threw a no-hitter on Tuesday, and Piscotty was the hero on Wednesday when he smacked the game-winning homer in the bottom of the 13th inning to give Oakland a 5-4 win.
"Trying to stay through the middle of the field," Piscotty modestly explained of his approach during a postgame television interview with NBC Sports Bay Area. "Got a fastball in that I could drive."
Piscotty, who contributed an RBI single earlier in the contest, went 2-for-6. The 28-year-old was 5-for-41 (.122) over the previous 10 games before coming through on Wednesday.
The Oakland bullpen was superb, as six relievers combined for seven innings of three-hit shutout ball.
"They have been doing a great job of holding it down," Piscotty said. "This offense is going to start clicking pretty soon and take a little pressure off them."
The Athletics will be looking for their sixth straight home win in the finale.
Meanwhile, the Reds have lost eight of their past 12 games. The stretch includes two shutout losses and extra-inning defeats of 10, 11 and 13 innings.
Cincinnati also has dropped six of its past eight road games, but manager David Bell wasn't entirely displeased after the Wednesday loss.
"It was really a good game," Bell told reporters. "We obviously didn't win it, but there was a lot of good defensive plays and a lot of good pitching that gave us an opportunity but we just couldn't come up with the run to win the game."
Reds star Joey Votto continues to struggle. He is hitless in nine at-bats in the series to see his average fall to .210. Votto is 3-for-30 over the past eight contests.
Oakland will be without slugger Khris Davis after he departed in the fifth inning Wednesday due to lingering effects from a left hip contusion. Manager Bob Melvin said after the contest that Davis would be re-examined on Friday.
Davis aggravated an injury that occurred Sunday when he ran into a railing while catching a foul fly down the left field line in Pittsburgh. Davis is batting .227 with 10 homers and 26 RBIs.
Right-hander Tanner Roark (2-1, 3.82 ERA) will be on the mound for the Reds after pitching a season-long 6 2/3 innings in a win over the San Francisco Giants in his last turn.
Roark allowed two runs and four hits on Saturday. He struck out seven and walked two.
The 32-year-old has allowed two or fewer runs in four of his past five starts.
Roark has made two career starts against the Athletics -- both in Oakland -- and is 1-0 with a 2.93 ERA.
Right-hander Chris Bassitt (1-0, 2.12 ERA) will make his fourth start of the season for the Athletics.
Bassitt served up two homers and gave up three runs and five hits over five innings in a no-decision against the Pirates in his last turn. He struck out six and walked two on Saturday.
The 30-year-old turned in a strong outing against the Toronto Blue Jays in his previous outing. He struck out nine without issuing a walk and gave up one run and three hits over seven innings while receiving a no-decision.
The Ohio native, who pitched collegiately at Akron, has never faced the Reds.
--Field Level Media
Updated May 9, 2019