Former A's slugger homers for Tigers in 3-2 win over Oakland

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OAKLAND, California — The struggling Athletics received yet another big blow to their pitching staff when Scott Kazmir was forced out of his latest start with tightness in his left shoulder.

Team officials were awaiting results from an MRI to determine the severity of Kazmir's injury, and manager Bob Melvin couldn't rule out a possible trip to the disabled list for the veteran left-hander.

"We'll have to see where he is tomorrow," Melvin said following Oakland's 3-2 loss to the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday. "He probably felt like he could continue to pitch but it didn't make any sense to. You could tell he was a little uncomfortable after the last pitch when he was coming off the mound. His body language wasn't great so we didn't want to push him."

Kazmir, winless since April 13, didn't allow a hit in three innings and struck out four with three walks. He walked slowly off the mound after striking out Miguel Cabrera to end the third, then later was taken to get an MRI on his left shoulder.

"His body language on the mound wasn't good," Oakland catcher Stephen Vogt said. "It was more grimace-y, just kind of like tight. That's how he described it, that his shoulder was tight."

Kazmir's loss was magnified when his replacement, Dan Otero, gave up a three-run home run to former A's slugger Yoenis Cespedes with two outs in the fifth inning.

Cespedes homered on a 2-2 changeup from Otero (2-3) after Ian Kinsler doubled to end an 0-for-22 drought and Cabrera was intentionally walked.

The Cuban slugger's sixth home run of the season was his first at the Coliseum since being traded from the A's to the Boston Red Sox on July 31 in exchange for pitcher Jon Lester. Cespedes, who was later dealt to the Tigers in the offseason, hadn't been back to Oakland since then and was 2 for 7 with three walks in the series before hitting a 2-2 pitch over the left field wall.

"Dan gets that ball down 99 times out of 100," Vogt said. "And of course it's Cespedes."

Kyle Ryan (1-0) pitched three innings of relief for the win. Tigers manager Brad Ausmus was forced to juggle his pitching staff after Alfredo Simon was placed on the bereavement list when he flew to the Dominican Republic to be with his ailing father following Tuesday night's loss to the A's.

Alex Wilson was pulled out of the bullpen and pitched three hitless innings with one strikeout and one walk in his first career start.

Ryan, who was initially being penciled in to start Wednesday but arrived too late to prepare, replaced Wilson and allowed three hits and one run. The left-hander walked three.

Joakim Soria pitched the ninth for his 15th save.

The struggling A's lost their second straight after a season-high three-game winning streak.

Vogt tripled and scored in the seventh for Oakland. Marcus Semien added a pinch-hit triple in the eighth and scored on Eric Sogard's groundout.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Athletics: Closer Sean Doolittle pitched one scoreless inning in his season debut. Doolittle struck out two and allowed one hit. ... LHP Eric O'Flaherty (strained shoulder) was scheduled to make his first rehab start Wednesday night for Triple-A Nashville. ... RHP A.J. Griffin (elbow surgery) will pitch two innings in a simulated game Thursday. ... 1B Ike Davis (strained left quad) will take batting practice prior to Thursday's game. ... Oakland starting pitchers have not allowed an earned run in five consecutive games for the first time since at least 1914.

UP NEXT

Tigers: RHP Buck Farmer was called up from Triple-A Toledo and will make his season debut against the Angels on Thursday. Farmer made two starts and appeared in four games overall with an 11.57 ERA in 2014.

Athletics: RHP Kendall Graveman (2-2) will make his second start since being recalled from the minors against the New York Yankees on Thursday.

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