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McCarthy hit in leg by liner, exits game

OAKLAND -- So much for making Rangers left-hander C.J. Wilson pay for his sharp criticism of everything from the A's pitching mound to their light attendance and their patient approach at the plate.

A's fans barely had a chance to boo Wilson before the game took a decidedly ugly turn in the top of the second inning Friday night, and all thoughts of retribution vanished.

The Rangers scored six runs in the second off A's right-hander Brandon McCarthy and cruised to a 9-1 win, beating Oakland for the sixth straight time.

As if that weren't bad enough for the A's, McCarthy took an Endy Chavez line drive off his right knee with one out in the fourth inning and had to leave the game. He suffered a contusion and is day to day.

"I don't know what it feels like to have a knee blown apart, to do something serious to it, but it didn't feel like anything too horrible," McCarthy said. "It wasn't even the first thing I noticed. Then when I tried to stand up, then I really noticed it. I was in pain, but I kind of knew it wasn't too horribly serious."

McCarthy and A's manager Bob Melvin said they won't know whether he'll be able to make his next start until Saturday at the earliest. Chavez hit the ball so hard that it caromed off McCarthy's knee all the way to the Rangers' bullpen down the right-field line.

"It was a pretty good shot. So not really sure," Melvin said. "The next day you usually have a little better indication whether or not he can make it to his next bullpen and his next start, but I'll have no idea until tomorrow."

McCarthy gave up eight hits and seven runs (five earned) in 3 1/3 innings. He entered the game with a four-game winning streak, matching his career high. He had gone 4-0 with a 2.78 ERA in five starts since the All-Star break before getting rocked by his former team.

Michael Young led off the second with a triple, ripping a shot off the right-field wall. Nelson Cruz singled Young home and went to second when Pennington botched Mike Napoli's grounder. Back-to-back singles by Mitch Moreland and Yorvit Torrealba and a double by Chavez made it 4-0.

McCarthy finally got the first out of the inning when Ian Kinsler popped up to second baseman Jemile Weeks, but Elvis Andrus singled home another run. Josh Hamilton made it 6-0 on a grounder to Pennington that looked like a sure double-play ball but turned into a fielder's choice when he bobbled it and could get only the force at second.

The Rangers added three runs in the fourth.

"For some reason, I just wasn't sharp," McCarthy said. "I couldn't get any finish. Just didn't feel good at all today. Just wasn't right."

Coming into the game, the A's were red hot, batting .296 since the All-Star Game break, the best mark in the Major Leagues. They had scored four or more runs in seven straight games and 19 of their past 20. But they had no answer to Wilson, who allowed just four hits and one run in six innings, striking out seven and walking three.

"The funny thing is the fans were very colorful in their comments they made," Wilson said. "It fired me up. It felt like a playoff game having the whole stadium against you except the 15 people who were there with me."

The A's didn't get a hit off Wilson until Pennington singled with one out in the third. They didn't score against him until the sixth, when Josh Willingham and Conor Jackson ripped back-to-back doubles to left, cutting the Rangers' lead to 9-1.

Jackson said the A's took Wilson's comments in stride and maintained that they had no affect on the game, once it began.

"He's seeking a little attention," Jackson said. "When you go out and pitch like that tonight, you're going to get it. You don't need to say the things that he did. It is what it is."

As hot as the A's hitters have been, there was still little chance they could overcome an early 9-0 deficit.

"It's just a rough day," McCarthy said. "You come out and put yourself in a hole like that in the second inning, I think that can kill the offense a little bit. It just killed some of the momentum. It was just one of those things where everything that could go wrong today did."

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