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Game #161: Khrush homers early, A’s win 5-2

Khris Davis now has 48 homers on the season.

Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

At this point the Oakland A’s are just tuning up for the postseason, but they took care of business on Saturday against the Angels. Khris Davis homered in the 1st inning, Jed Lowrie went deep as well, and the pitching staff had a quality day to keep the Halos quiet in a 5-2 victory. Along the way, there were some fun stats to follow.

The A’s jumped out early on Davis’ two-run homer. It was his 48th dinger of the season, putting him in a tie with Jimmie Foxx for fourth-most in franchise history. The list is just two seasons by Mark McGwire (52, 49), two by Foxx (58, 48), and this year by Khrush (48). His 123 RBI are the most by an A’s player since Miguel Tejada’s 131 in his 2002 MVP-winning campaign, and tied for fourth in Oakland history (16th in franchise).

There is still one more game left for Khrush to reach 50 long balls, but there’s another statistical milestone within much easier reach. Davis finished the day hitting .247, which is his exact batting average for each of the last three seasons. Here are the lines he could put up on Sunday to finish at .247 for the fourth straight year:

  • 0-for-1
  • 0-for-2
  • 1-for-4
  • 1-for-5
  • 1-for-6

If he gets two hits, then he needs 8-to-10 at-bats to balance them out. But if those two hits are his 49th and 50th homers and they ruin his batting average, then I think we’d all make that trade.

Scoring on the homer was Matt Chapman, giving him 100 runs on the season. Combined with his 42 doubles and 24 homers, that gives Chapman this convoluted milestone:

  • 7th in A’s history with 20+ HR, 40+ doubles, and 100+ runs (Al Simmons thrice, Jason Giambi, Wally Moses, Bob Johnson)
  • 6th in MLB this season with that stat combo (Lindor, Carpenter, Betts, Albies, Bregman)

Oakland added on a couple more thanks to Jed Lowrie, who is now up to 99 RBI on the season. He struck first with a sac fly in the 3rd inning, and then again on a solo shot in the 6th.

In the meantime, the Angels scratched out a couple runs as well. The first was unearned in the 5th inning, after Chad Pinder made a throwing error at third base and the free runner later came around to score. The other came in the 7th, as Fernando Rodney allowed a single to the leadoff man and then three walks to force him home. So, the Angels got two tallies on the board, but not because they, like, hit the ball or anything.

The A’s picked up one more insurance run in the 8th. They loaded the bases, and Stephen Piscotty delivered a sac fly to up the lead to 5-2. His 86th RBI set a new career high.

From there, it was Treinen Time. The closer came in for the 9th, and despite a spot of trouble he made it through. There was an infield single, and a catcher’s interference, but it still only took Treinen 18 pitches to notch his 38th save. His 0.78 ERA is the fifth-lowest in MLB since 1990 (min 40 innings), and he’s one of only four relievers in history with a sub-1.00 ERA and at least 38 saves. He also recorded his 100th strikeout, making him the first pitcher in history with 30 saves, 100 Ks, and a sub-1.00 ERA (h/t Ben Ross, NBCS).

In one more statistical marvel, Ramon Laureano threw out another runner for his ninth outfield assist. That ties him for 10th in MLB (using this morning’s rankings), even though the rookie has only played 46 games and around 380 innings. The league lead is 12 for the whole summer.

Pinder checked a box off his super-sub bucket list.

And there were eclairs.

All in all, a good day at the ballpark. The A’s now have 97 wins, which is their most in a season since 2002. They have one more tuneup on Sunday, with Brett Anderson on the mound against the Angels.

And then, it’s off to New York for Wednesday’s showdown.

*** Click here to revisit tonight’s Game Thread! ***