OAKLAND — After a rough 2-5 road trip, the A's faced what appeared to be a tough assignment Tuesday night when they opened a homestand against the Cincinnati Reds and right-hander Bronson Arroyo.
Arroyo had allowed a combined five earned runs in four previous June starts before Tuesday, posting an ERA of 1.57.
So much for Arroyo's shutdown month.
The A's battered Arroyo for seven earned runs on seven hits in a 7-3 interleague victory over Cincinnati at the O.co Coliseum as they pulled back into a tie for first place with Texas in the American League West. Arroyo lasted just 4 innings, his shortest outing since July 16, 2012, when he gave up five runs in 3 innings in a loss to Arizona.
The A's scored twice in second inning, four times in the third and once in the fourth off Arroyo, building a 7-1 lead.
A's third baseman Josh Donaldson crushed a two-run homer off Arroyo in the third. He went 2-for-2, scored twice and drove in two runs while Arroyo was in the game. Josh Reddick and Brandon Moss both doubled off him in the second.
A's left-hander Tommy Milone allowed only three runs on six hits, but he lasted just 4 2/3 innings and received no decision. He's 0-2 over his past four starts and hasn't won since June 3 at Milwaukee.
Cincinnati's Joey Votto hit his 15th homer of the season, a solo shot in the fourth. Reds rookie left fielder Derrick Robinson had a career-high four hits, going 4-for-5, while second baseman Cesar Izturis went 3-for-4 with a double.
A's relievers Pat Neshek, Jerry Blevins, Ryan Cook, Sean Doolittle and Dan Otero combined to blank Cincinnati over the final 4 1/3 innings.
Reds relievers Curtis Partch, Marry Parra and J.J. Hoover combined to pitch four scoreless innings.
Moss ignited the A's two-run rally in the second, lining an opposite-field double to the left-center gap with one out. After Donaldson reached on an infield single, Reddick doubled Moss home. Catcher Stephen Vogt, who was called up Tuesday from Triple-A Sacramento, lined a sacrifice fly to center for his first major-league RBI, driving in Donaldson.
A's center-fielder Coco Crisp led off the third with a walk and moved to second on Jed Lowrie's one-out single. Yoenis Cespedes lined an RBI single to right, as Crisp scored and Lowrie advanced to third. Moss brought Lowrie home with a sacrifice fly to right, making it 4-0. Donaldson sent Arroyo's next pitch high and deep into the left field seats for a two-run homer.
Votto hit a leadoff home run off Milone in the top of the fourth, cutting Oakland's lead to 6-1. After the A's added a run in the fourth, Cincinnati scored twice in the fifth. Cesar Izturis hit a one-out double, moved to third on Derrick Robinson's infield single and scored on Shin-Soo Choo's sacrifice fly.
Milone then walked three straight batters, forcing in Robinson. But reliever Pat Neshek came on to strike out Chris Heisey with the bases loaded.
NOTES: Cincinnati second baseman Brandon Phillips is missing this two-game series "while tending to a family matter," the Reds announced in a release. He's expected to rejoin the team Friday at Texas. According to MLB.com's transactions page, the Reds placed Phillips on the paternity list. Infielder Henry Rodriguez was recalled Tuesday from Triple-A Louisville, taking Phillips' roster spot. ... Heisey (strained right hamstring) was activated from the disabled list and started at designated hitter against the A's. Outfielder Donald Lutz was sent to Double-A Pensacola, opening a spot on the 25-man roster for Heisey. ... The A's played their first game at the O.co Coliseum since June 16 against Seattle when raw sewage contaminated parts of both clubhouses and the umpires' room. A hazmat company located and removed a large "mass" that had blocked the sewer line, said David Rinetti, A's vice president of stadium operations. Large segments of carpet and drywall were replaced. "Anything that could have been contaminated was removed," Rinetti said.