Oakland A's Notes: Komine, Bradley Lead Way

OAKLAND - It didn't look like a favorable match-up in the box scores. Oakland A's rookie Shane Komine had the daunting task of taking on former Cy Young award winner Roy Halladay in his major league debut. Komine not only held his own, he was in-line for a win until a ninth inning Toronto comeback. In the end, it was Milton Bradley who was the hero of the day.

Oakland A's rookie Shane Komine's career got off to a shaky start. He allowed a leadoff home run to Reed Johnson, on the second pitch of his major league debut, hanging a curveball to the Blue Jays lead-off hitter. Komine shook that off, however, and he allowed just three singles and no additional runs for the rest of the game.

After working his way out of a one-out, bases-loaded jam in the sixth, he departed after six innings with a 2-1 lead. Komine allowed four hits and four walks in his major league debut and he flashed his trademark curveball and a fastball with good movement.

He had won his last six starts in Sacramento, posting an 0.42 ERA over that span and likely earned himself another start with Oakland next week. Komine is about two years removed from Tommy John surgery, which he had in August 2004 after being injured in AA-Midland. He was added to the 40-man roster this off-season after a strong second-half showing at AA and in the Arizona Fall League in 2005.

Komine was still in-line for the win on Sunday in the top of the ninth inning, when Huston Street was asked to protect a one-run lead. After stranding two runners in the eighth, Street allowed three runs in the ninth, the big blow a two-run double by Lyle Overbay. Street had worked a lot this week and appeared to be laboring in the final inning.

The A's had a tough task of coming back against the Blue Jays' ace reliever B.J. Ryan in the bottom of the ninth, and they did just that. Mark Ellis singled off Ryan with one out, then Mark Kotsay fouled off seven consecutive 3-2 pitches to work a walk, setting the stage for Milton Bradley's three-run walk-off home run for a 6-5 win.

Ken Macha thought to himself, "I hope he hits one like he did in Detroit," as Milton Bradley batted in the ninth inning Sunday against Ryan. Bradley didn't though. That home run went to left field. This was a tremendous blast to straightaway center for a dramatic, three-run walk-off home run that lifted the A's to a wild 6-5 win over the Blue Jays on a day when both closers gave up three runs in the ninth.

"Since Milton's been back, he's done a tremendous job, offensively and defensively," A's manager Ken Macha said. "This is the type of player we were hoping he would be."

Bradley jumped on a 2-1 fastball from Ryan. As his teammates waited at home plate, Bradley sprinted around third and joined in the celebration at home.

"I've never hit a walk-off homer," Bradley said. "I was looking for a ball over the plate and got it."

It was the A's sixth walk-off victory this year. The last came on Frank Thomas' homer July 6 against the Angels.

Bradley is 9-for-28 (.321) with four doubles, three home runs, 16 RBIs, 11 runs and two stolen bases since being reinstated from the disabled list on July 14. He's raised his batting average from .213 to .284 overall.

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