Isiah Kiner-Falefa highlighted a three-run third inning with a two-run single, and three pitchers combined to limit the Oakland Athletics to five hits as the American League West’s last-place team surprised the playoff hopeful for the second straight day, 4-3 on Sunday afternoon.
Leody Taveras contributed an RBI triple, helping the Rangers (53-89) capture the series 2-1, their third series win to go along with a split in their past four. Texas held on Sunday after taking a 4-0 lead in the fourth.
Yan Gomes and Matt Olson homered for the A’s (77-66), who fell three games off the pace in the AL wild-card chase.
One day after rallying from a late 6-2 deficit to win 8-6, the Rangers took a front-running approach, building a three-run lead in the third after Yohel Pozo doubled and Yonny Hernandez singled to set the stage against A’s starter James Kaprielian (7-5).
With one out and runners at second and third, Kiner-Falefa went the other way with a ground-ball single to right field, giving the Rangers a 2-0 lead.
Jonah Heim’s sacrifice fly three batters later made it 3-0. Tavares’ triple came with two outs in the fourth, scoring Jason Martin, who had singled. That made the score 4-0.
Kaprielian was pulled at that point, charged with four runs on eight hits in 3 2/3 innings. He walked one and struck out five.
Gomes hit his 13th homer, a solo shot, in the fifth and Olson his 34th, a two-run bomb, in the sixth, to complete the scoring.
Rangers starter Taylor Hearn (6-4) finished the sixth before being removed, having allowed three runs and five hits. He struck out two without issuing a walk.
After Dennis Santana pitched hitless seventh and eighth innings, Joe Barlow worked a 1-2-3 ninth for his second save in two days and sixth of the season.
Kiner-Falefa collected three singles while Pozo had a double and a single for the Rangers, who outhit the A’s 11-5.
Starling Marte went 2-for-4 with a stolen base, his 45th, for the A’s, who edged Texas 10-9 in the season series.
Daulton Jefferies, Jake Diekman and Lou Trivino combined for 5 1/3 innings of shutout relief, striking out six, to keep Oakland within striking distance.
–Field Level Media
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