Joe Blanton refused to worry about his fate even after allowing the tying run to reach second with none out in the ninth -- Rookie of the Year closer Huston Street now had the ball. The pair of second-year pitchers calmly sustained Oakland's winning streak. Blanton pitched into the ninth and Jay Payton homered to help the surging Athletics win their fifth straight game with a 2-0 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Tuesday night. Jason Kendall added an RBI single as the A's matched their best winning streak of the season. They have won eight of nine and 10 of 12, including a three-game weekend sweep of New York at Yankee Stadium. Blanton (6-6) bounced back with a great outing following an 11-2 loss last Wednesday at Cleveland in which he gave up two homers and six earned runs in five innings. The right-hander, who has been inconsistent at times in his second major league season, didn't allow a baserunner past first until giving up a single and a double to start the ninth and giving way to closer Huston Street. Blanton retired 14 straight starting with Kenji Johjima's fielder's choice to end the second, taking advantage of his fastball being the strongest it has all year.
Seattle Mariners catcher Kenji Johjima jumps over Oakland Athletics' Nick Swisher in the seventh inning of a baseball game Tuesday, June 13, 2006, in Oakland, Calif. Swisher, out on the play, was attempting to score on a hit by teammate Mark Kotsay.
Blanton received a standing ovation when he left after allowing five hits, striking out two and not walking a batter in his fourth career complete game and second this season. After plunking Jose Lopez to load the bases in the ninth, Street struck out Raul Ibanez and Richie Sexson, then got Carl Everett to fly out to left to end it. It was Street's 15th save in 18 chances and fifth in five games. Ichiro Suzuki singled in the ninth to extend his hitting streak to 13 games. Like Oakland, Seattle had won nine of 11, but the Mariners were eager to get on track against their division opponent. The Mariners are 1-7 versus the A's, losing the last seven. The A's winning streak in the series is their longest since taking 11 in a row against Seattle from June 22-Sept. 18, 1992.
Jamie Moyer (3-6) made his 499th career start as the Mariners began a stretch in which they play 12 of 15 games on the road. The lefty ran into trouble in the seventh and was done for the night when he loaded the bases on a walk to Marco Scutaro with no outs following consecutive singles to Nick Swisher and Payton, giving way to George Sherrill. Moyer allowed two runs and eight hits in six innings, struck out two and walked four. The 43-year-old Moyer has lasted more than six innings only once in his last six starts. He has been hurt by a lack of run support. Payton hit a solo homer to left in the fifth, his third of the season. He is batting .393 (11-for-28) against the Mariners this year. Blanton, meanwhile, improved to 5-1 with a 2.25 ERA in seven career starts against Seattle. Oakland designated hitter Frank Thomas was back in the lineup after sitting out Sunday in New York with a sore right quadriceps muscle that also bothered him last month and forced him to miss four games.