OAKLAND, Calif. — Tommy Milone allowed three hits over a career-high eight innings in an impressive Oakland debut, and the Athletics beat the Kansas City Royals 1-0 on Monday night.

Milone (1-0) faced the minimum in five of his innings, including getting through the fourth despite throwing only two strikes among his 10 pitches.

Perhaps for a night, Milone made it easier for the small group of fans who turned out at the Coliseum to picture life without lefty Gio Gonzalez. The A's acquired Milone from the Nationals in December, sending All-Star Gonzalez to the nation's capital.

Milone won his sixth career start after the Nationals won all of his five starts last season. Grant Balfour finished the three-hit shutout for his second save in as many chances.