ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Khris Davis homered twice, Ramon Laureano connected on the game’s fourth three-run shot to break a tie in the sixth inning and the Oakland Athletics stayed in front in the AL wild-card race with a 14-9 victory over the Texas Rangers on Friday night.
The A’s (88-60) won their fourth straight, a streak that started with three victories in Houston following a 15-0 loss to the AL West-leading Astros.
Oakland started the day a half-game ahead of Tampa Bay, which was playing at the Los Angeles Angels. Cleveland, rained out at home against Minnesota, is 1½ games behind the A’s.
Davis had one of the three-run homers, an opposite-field drive to right in the third after a solo shot into the Oakland bullpen in left-center in the second.
The 21st and 22nd long balls of the season for Davis put him within one of Jason Giambi’s record 20 homers for opposing players at Globe Life Park, the hitter-friendly home of the Rangers that’s being replaced next year by a retractable-roof stadium across the street.
Laureano’s 22nd homer well over the 14-foot fence down the line in left came against rookie reliever Ian Gibaut (1-1) after Texas manager Chris Woodward ordered an intentional walk of leadoff hitter Marcus Semien on a 3-0 count with an open base in a 7-7 game.
Both of the three-run shots from Texas put the Rangers ahead.
Shin-Soo Choo’s opposite-field drive to left made it 4-3 in the second, and Danny Santana answered Davis’ second homer with his 25th of the season into the home run porch in right for a 7-6 lead in the third. Choo tied a career high with his 22nd home run.
Laureano pulled Oakland even with a sacrifice fly in the fourth.
J.B. Weldenken (2-1) retired all nine hitters he faced in the fourth, fifth and sixth before A.J. Puk added two more perfect innings. Blake Treinen gave up a two-run single to Elvis Andrus in the ninth.
Sean Murphy and Sheldon Neuse, the last two hitters in the Oakland order, reached four times each. Neuse had four singles and drove in three runs, capped by a two-RBI hit in the ninth. Murphy had two doubles among three hits and scored four times.
Semien extended his career best with his 29th homer in the ninth, a two-run shot.
Oakland starter Chris Bassitt gave up a season-high seven runs while matching his most earned runs at six in three innings, the right-hander’s shortest outing of the season. Bassitt’s ERA against division opponents rose to 6.02, compared to 2.70 against all other opponents.
Texas rookie Brock Burke, who had gone at least five innings in each of his first four career starts, allowed six runs in three innings. The 23-year-old left-hander surrendered three homers for the second straight outing after not allowing any in his first three.
A’s: RHP Mike Fiers (14-4, 3.97 ERA) had a career-best 12-game winning streak stopped in his previous start, allowing nine runs in one inning in a 15-0 loss to Houston. The nine-year veteran is going for his first 15-win season.
Rangers: LHP Mike Minor (13-8, 3.08) goes for a career high in wins in what is set to become his third season with at least 30 starts. The 31-year-old had his major league-leading seventh outing of at least eight innings in his previous start, allowing two runs over eight innings in a 10-4 win over Baltimore.
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