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Colon strikes out five over seven innings

While it's hard to imagine that many people throughout baseball had predicted the A's would be in playoff contention come mid-August, that's exactly where the team sits, only a half-game back in the American League Wild Card race.

"We're just trying to have fun right now and take it one game at a time," A's shortstop Cliff Pennington said. "The only game that matters is tonight. If we keep playing like that, then at the end of the day we'll be in as good a position as we can be in."

While a young core of players have been the catalyst for the A's resurgence, it'll be veteran Bartolo Colon taking the hill on Saturday against the Indians in Oakland.

The right-hander took a loss in his last outing against the White Sox, allowing six runs -- including five in the sixth -- on nine hits in 5 2/3 innings to snap his three-game winning streak.

"They were making better contact, seeing the ball better," Colon said. "Too many fastballs in that sixth inning. Everyone knows I'm a fastball pitcher. Some were a bit up, and they were looking for it."

Meanwhile, Corey Kluber (0-1, 8.56 ERA) will make his fourth start for the Indians after being called up when Derek Lowe was released on Aug. 2.

Taking his first loss of the season on Sunday against the Red Sox, Kluber was pounded in just 3 1/3 innings, which included a two-run home run from Adrian Gonzalez (first inning) and a two-run double from Carl Crawford (second).

In all, the right-hander allowed six runs on seven hits. He also struck out four in what became a 14-1 rout.

"Kluber just didn't have command of his fastball," manager Manny Acta said. "It was up in the zone. Everything was up. He didn't establish it and he wasn't able to use that swing-and-miss slider that he has. It put us in a bind there."

Indians: Tomlin getting second opinion on elbow
Right-hander Josh Tomlin will travel to Southern California on Tuesday to see Dr. Lewis Yocum for a second opinion on his sore elbow.

On the disabled list since Tuesday, Tomlin began the season in the Cleveland rotation, but he struggled and was moved to the bullpen in July. He is 5-8 with a 6.36 ERA in 21 games, including 16 starts.

• Carlos Santana was at first base for the Indians on Friday, giving his legs a night off from squatting behind the plate. Santana, 26, has started 71 games at catcher, 17 at first base and 14 at designated hitter.

"He's our catcher right now," Acta said on Friday. "I'm not going to speculate about what he can become in the future. That's not even discussed. He's our catcher right now."

A's: Dental procedure slows Reddick
Right fielder Josh Reddick, who leads the A's with 25 home runs, was out of the starting lineup for Friday night's game against Cleveland because of complications stemming from a tooth extraction on Monday.

Reddick had another dental procedure on Friday, A's manager Bob Melvin said.

"This is becoming quite the issue," Melvin said. "Really yesterday we had him in the lineup to start and put him into the DH role because it was bothering him.

"Went back to the dentist today and had another procedure in there. Dry socket or whatever they're calling it. It's been a little bit of a problem, but hopefully we'll have him back in the lineup tomorrow."

However, Reddick did pinch-hit in Friday's contest, collecting a single in the eighth inning.

• Outfielder Seth Smith took batting practice and ran the bases before Friday night's game as he continued his rehabilitation from a strained left hamstring. He is eligible to come off the DL on Saturday but won't be activated, Melvin said. Melvin said he wants to see how Smith fares taking batting practice and running for a few days.

Worth noting
• A's left-hander Brett Anderson, who's recovering from Tommy John surgery, will throw a bullpen session at The Coliseum before Saturday's game.

• With a 6-4 loss in Friday's game against the A's, Cleveland is now 25-14 in series openers this season.

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