ARLINGTON, Texas — The Oakland A’s erased a five-run deficit with an eighth-inning explosion, rallying to beat the Texas Rangers 7-5 Friday night at Globe Life Park.
Oakland third baseman Brett Lawrie drove in the go-ahead runs with a two-run, two-out double into the right-field corner off Rangers closer Neftali Feliz.
After one of their worst months in recent memory, the comeback lifted the spirits of the A’s, while draining the life out of the Rangers and their fans.
“You probably could’ve heard the sigh when Lawrie hit that ball down the line,” said catcher Stephen Vogt, who singled and scored in the eighth.
The A’s (10-14) battered three members of the Texas bullpen in the eighth, scoring seven runs off six hits and two walks. The seven runs were the most by Oakland in an inning this season.
“It’s a tough loss no doubt,” Texas manager Jeff Banister said after the team’s fourth consecutive defeat. “You roll your three guys out of the bullpen that have been the best for you.”
First baseman Mark Canha started the rally by sending the first pitch from Texas reliever Shawn Tolleson into the right-center field bullpen. Canha would end the uprising with a run-scoring single.
Tolleson gave up the first four runs with reliever Roman Mendez failing to get an out and giving
up two more. Right fielder Josh Reddick had a two-run single off loser Mendez (0-1) to get Oakland within 5-4.
Feliz came on with two out and runners at the corners. Lawrie worked a full count before fighting off a high fastball down the line to give Oakland their first lead.
“It could have gone either way,” Lawrie said. “It always does.”
Oakland reliever Dan Otero (2-1) picked up the win and closer Tyler Clippard pitched a scoreless ninth for his second save.
Texas’ meltdown wasted a masterful performance by veteran starter Colby Lewis, who tossed six shutout innings and left with a 3-0 lead but didn’t get a decision. The 35-year-old right-hander struck out eight and allowed only two hits in his second quality start of the season – both against Oakland.
“Extremely frustrating,” Tolleson said. “Colby pitched an awesome game. He was fun to watch out there tonight.”
Texas designated hitter Prince Fielder went deep for only the second time this season with a solo shot to center field in the fourth off Oakland starter Scott Kazmir. Texas first baseman Kyle Blanks, a member of the A’s last season, drilled a homer in the second.
The Rangers (7-15) set a season high with six extra-base hits.
Lewis set his season high for strikeouts with six when he got designated hitter Billy Butler looking for the second out of the fourth inning. He added two more in the fifth.
The last time Lewis had more than that was Aug. 16 when he struck out 10 against the Los Angeles Angels.
The Rangers, who came into the game with an American League-worst .210 batting average, gave Lewis some run support in the second inning on Blanks’ blast. It was the first hit for Blanks with the Rangers after his contract was purchased from Triple-A Round Rock on Wednesday.
Texas had just one hit off Kazmir in their first meeting against him in April.