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NYY@OAK: Parker shuts down Yanks over eight innings

The A's and Rays are in a similar spot. They're both within striking distance of first place in their respective divisions, with Oakland currently owning an American League Wild Card spot.

But both teams elected to stand pat as the non-waiver Trade Deadline came and went on Tuesday afternoon. If they want to continue to stay in the playoff race, they'll have to do it with the guys currently on their rosters.

The A's will turn to right-hander Jarrod Parker on Wednesday afternoon at the Coliseum. Parker, who is 7-4 with a 3.38 ERA this season, hasn't been sharp lately. He's given up four or more runs in three of his last four starts, including his last outing against Baltimore.

In that start, Parker was roughed up for six runs on eight hits in only five innings. Parker struck out eight and walked just one, but he gave up two home runs.

"A couple bad pitches I'd like to have back," Parker said afterward. "Some of those pitches I probably could have hit out of the park."

The A's have the lowest ERA in the AL, so manager Bob Melvin was OK with the team not making a move like division rivals Texas and the Angels did.

"That's been a strength for us all year, and if you can hold teams down, you give yourself chance to win games," Melvin said. "I know they upgraded their pitching. That wasn't something we felt like we needed to upgrade."

The Rays will counter with left-hander Alex Cobb, who has lost three consecutive starts despite allowing three or fewer runs in all three. Cobb gave up only three runs over seven innings in his last outing against the Angels, while striking out three and walking none. But the Tampa Bay offense gave him just one run of support.

"It's the same story," Rays manager Joe Maddon said afterward. "We just have to do better offensively. We have opportunities, they're out there."

Cobb is 4-8 with a 4.93 ERA in 12 starts this season. He has won only one of his last six decisions, and he figures to be the odd man out when Jeff Niemann returns from the disabled list. But Cobb said he can't worry about that.

"You can stress about that your whole career, really," Cobb said. "Just because it's getting down to where a few starts until he's back, you don't look at it any differently than you have your whole career. You go out there every start trying to win and compete in every game. If you do that, then you don't worry about all the little things that go along with it. My approach is going to stay the same whether he's ready tomorrow or late August or September."

A's: McCarthy struggles in rehab start
• Right-hander Brandon McCarthy made his first rehab start on Monday since returning to the 15-day disabled list on June 20 with recurring right shoulder soreness, and he struggled. McCarthy allowed six runs over 3 2/3 innings for Triple-A Sacramento.

McCarthy will throw another bullpen session after a couple days of rest, and he's expected to make another rehab start at some point before returning to the big leagues.

"You want to make sure he's throwing the ball where he wants to," Melvin said, "and he feels good about himself coming back to the big league level. We just have not gotten there yet because health is the big issue with him, and once he throws his bullpen, we'll have a better indication."

McCarthy is 6-3 with a 2.54 ERA in 12 starts this season. He last pitched on June 19.

• Outfielder Coco Crisp remains day-to-day with a left hamstring strain, but Crisp took cage batting practice on Tuesday for the first time since injuring himself on Saturday.

Rays: Conrad optioned, Lueke recalled
• The Rays optioned infielder Brooks Conrad to Triple-A Durham prior to Tuesday night's game and recalled pitcher Josh Lueke. Conrad had been hitting just .172 in 24 games, but the move was made mostly because the team's bullpen was depleted after Monday's 15-inning game.

"Right now, obviously after [Monday] night we're really concerned about the bullpen," Maddon said Tuesday. "We've been in really good shape, and we're still in really good shape, but now is when you don't want to beat people up."

Lueke had an 18.90 ERA in three appearances for the Rays earlier this season. He last pitched in the big leagues on May 18.

• Shortstop Sean Rodriguez's RBI single in the sixth inning of Tuesday' 8-0 win was his first RBI since July 14. Rodriguez was 0-for-17 in his last eight games before going 1-for-3 on Tuesday night.

Worth noting
• Parker has never pitched against the Rays.

• Cobb is 0-1 with a 10.38 ERA in one career start against the A's.

• The A's had only three hits in their 8-0 loss to the Rays on Tuesday, just their third defeat in their last 13 games.

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