- Associated Press - Saturday, August 6, 2016

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - Dillon Overton felt most of his pitches went where he wanted. The Chicago Cubs just managed to hit it where he threw it.

Recalled from the minors earlier this week for his third stint with Oakland, Overton allowed seven runs and nine hits in three innings in the Athletics’ 7-2 loss to the Cubs on Friday night.

“I think overall my pitches were working good, they just hit everything I threw,” Overton said. “I might have left a few cutters over the plate just a little too much but other than that I thought my changeup was working pretty good. I got a lot of swing and misses on that. I got a couple of strikeouts on my curveball which is better than what it has been.”

The rookie left-hander is winless since beating the Los Angeles Angels in his major league debut June 25.

“Every time you feel like your stuff is on point but they hit it, it always puts that thought in your mind, ‘what am I supposed to do now?,’” Overton said. “It happens to the best of us so I’ve just got to keep that positive attitude and keep grinding away.”



Oakland manager Bob Melvin added: “We’ve seen him pitch better than this. I haven’t looked at the video yet but my guess is those balls were out over the middle of the plate.”

While the Cubs roughed up Overton (1-3), the A’s couldn’t get much going against Jon Lester in his return to Oakland.

Lester, who played for the A’s over the final two months of the 2014 season, pitched seven strong innings in his first time back at the Coliseum since then and saw a different team than the one he left. Lester (12-4) had eight strikeouts, allowed two runs and nine hits while winning for the third time in his last four starts.

“It’s a little different,” Lester said. “Any time you’ve been on the home side and come back as a visitor it’s different. I enjoyed pitching here. I wish it turned out a little different but I was with a good team and great fans. It’s unbelievable to come here as a home player as opposed to a visitor.”

Jorge Soler hit a three-run home run in his first at-bat following a two-month absence for the Cubs. Dexter Fowler also homered while Javier Baez added a two-run double to help Chicago win its fifth straight and improve to a major league-best 67-41.

Soler, activated off the disabled list before the game after being out since June 6 with a hamstring injury, celebrating his return to the majors with his home run in the first inning.

Brett Eibner, called up from the minors earlier in the day, homered against Lester leading off the sixth for Oakland. Marcus Semien added an RBI single.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Eibner, acquired from the Kansas City Royals in the Billy Burns trade, impressed in his A’s debut. “It was good to see Eibner get a good swing,” Melvin said. “His batting practice was similar to the ball he hit out. We saw that he had a lot of power.”

TRAINER’S ROOM

Cubs: Manager Joe Maddon said the plan is to ease Soler back in and get him some defensive work in the outfield before the team faces another NL team on Aug. 11. … RHP Joe Nathan was designated for assignment. The 41-year-old was 1-0 in three appearances with the Chicago.

Athletics: Jed Lowrie was placed on the 15-day disabled list because of a bunion on his left foot. … RHP Jesse Hahn also went on the DL with a strained right shoulder. … RHP Andrew Triggs was called back up from Triple-A Nashville along with Eibner.

UP NEXT

Cubs: RHP Jake Arrieta (12-5) pitches the middle game of the series at the Coliseum. The Chicago ace has lost three straight decisions.

Athetics: RHP Sonny Gray (5-10) has won only twice in 11 starts since coming off the disabled list. Gray has a 5.57 ERA over that span.

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