ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — A two-run home run from Mark Canha off the left-field foul pole broke a fifth-inning tie as the Oakland Athletics beat the Texas Rangers 8-6 on Saturday night.
The A’s scored all their runs on homers. Matt Chapman (three-run homer in the third inning), Josh Phegley (two-run homer in the fourth) and Matt Olson (solo in the sixth). Oakland’s 242 home runs are one short of the franchise record set in 1996.
Oakland has won 10 of its last 12 games and entered the night with a half-game lead for the American League’s first wild card over the Tampa Bay Rays, who played later Saturday at Los Angeles.
Ryan Buchter (1-1) pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings and was one of six A’s relievers after Mike Fiers left following 1 2/3 innings because of right-arm nerve irritation. Liam Hendriks pitched a scoreless ninth for his 22nd save in 27 opportunities.
Mike Minor (13-9) lost for the first time since Aug. 27, allowing a season-high seven earned runs in five innings. Minor entered the game third in the AL in ERA at 3.08.
Rougned Odor hit a two-run homer in the second. He leads the Rangers with 27 homers and 81 RBIs while hitting .207.
With two outs and no one on base for Texas in the second inning, Danny Santana singled and advanced on a balk when Fiers turned his shoulders toward first base before throwing to the base. Manager Bob Melvin and trainer Nick Paparesta then visited Fiers, who threw some warmup pitches and was left in. The next delivery was a wild pitch that sent Santana to third base. Odor hit Fiers’ next pitch for a two-run homer to right field. Fiers walked Delino DeShields and was then removed.
Fiers came off the worst of his 184 major league starts, allowing nine runs in one inning on Monday at Houston, which followed a career-long 12-game winning streak from May 7 to Aug. 27.
Phegley’s homer sailed just over the outstretched glove of Nomar Mazara at the right-field wall to give the A’s a 5-3 lead. The Rangers tied the score in the bottom of the fourth on an RBI groundout by DeShields and a single by Shin-Soo Choo.
Chapman has 33 home runs, a franchise record for third basemen.
Rangers C Jeff Mathis left the game in the second inning with a low back strain. … A’s OF Stephen Piscotty (right ankle) took batting practice with his ankle taped.
Texas plans to throw a bullpen game in Sunday’s series finale against A’s LHP Sean Manaea (1-0, 0.75). Manaea will make his third start since being reinstated from the 60-day injured list on Sept. 1 following surgery on his pitching shoulder last September. He held Detroit to one run in seven innings last Sunday.