Kwan homers, Guardians get 15 hits and rout A's 12-3 before crowd of just 5,425


OAKLAND, Calif. — Bay Area native Steven Kwan homered and reached base four times, and the Cleveland Guardians had 15 hits in a 12-3 rout of the Oakland Athletics before a Saturday afternoon crowd of just 5,425.

Six Guardians stole bases off Kyle McCann, a 26-year-old catcher making his major league debut.

Cleveland’s Stephen Vogt tied Al Lopez in 1951 as the only managers to start their Cleveland careers 3-0. Oakland dropped to 0-3 for the second time in 28 years. The Guardians scored six or more runs in the first three games of the season for the fourth time in franchise history. They have outscored the A’s 26-7, a plus-19 run difference that is the best in team history, topping plus-15 in 1922 and 1999.

“Everything’s kind of clicking,” Kwan said. “We’re playing Guardians baseball, taking extra bags, stealing bases. It’s been a lot of fun.”

Kwan has been able to spend time with family this weekend, including visiting his newborn nephew for the first time.

“Those are the things that let you detach from the game,” Kwan said. “Obviously, it’s a fun game, but it’s also really stressful.”

The A’s, who have announced plans to move to Las Vegas for the 2028 season, have drawn 22,784 in their first three home games for an average of 7,595.

“From baserunning to defense to some walks, it kind of all adds up to a crappy day,” A’s manager Mark Kotsay said.

Cleveland trailed 3-2 before scoring three runs in the fourth, two each in the fifth and sixth, and then one in the sixth to burst ahead 8-3.

“Our guys punched back every time,” Vogt said. “I thought it just showed the grit. The way that these guys have battled and the at-bats that they put together, it was great to see.”

Nick Sandlin (1-0) struck out two in a hitless fifth in relief of Tanner Bibee, who allowed three runs, six hits in four innings. Bibee matched his career high with five walks.

Cleveland’s Cade Smith, a 24-year-old right-hander, pitched two hitless innings with five strikeouts and a walk in his major league debut.

Vogt praised Bibee for getting through four innings despite his command being off.

“We needed those innings out of him today, especially with the way the pen was situated going into the game,” Vogt said. “And then the offense picked us up.”

JP Sears (0-1) gave up five runs and six hits in 3 2/3 innings. Sears went 5-14 last year as the A’s finished a major league-worst 50-112.

Gabriel Arias hit a tying single and Austin Hedges followed with a sacrifice fly in the go-ahead fourth.

A throwing error by Oakland shortstop Nick Allen led to a pair of unearned runs.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Guardians: RHP Ben Lively and RHP Xzavion Curry, both on the 15-day IL with a viral illness, threw bullpen sessions on Friday and are expected to go on a rehab assignment soon. … LHP Sam Hentges (left middle finger inflammation) and RHP Gavin Williams (right elbow inflammation) are improving and will throw bullpens soon.

UP NEXT

Guardians RHP Carlos Carrasco (3-6, 6.80 ERA in 2023) faces A’s RHP Paul Blackburn (4-7, 4.83 ERA in 2023) on Sunday.

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/mlb



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