|7:10 PM PT8:10 PM MT9:10 PM CT10:10 PM ET22:10 ET2:10 GMT10:10 7:10 PM MST9:10 PM EST9:40 PM VEN6:10 UAE (+1)9:10 PM CT, September 24, 2018
Safeco Field, Seattle, Washington Attendance: 16,491
A's 1 win from popping corks on wild-card berth
Oakland Athletics at Seattle Mariners
- Oakland dropped the series finale against Minnesota, missing the last chance to clinch a postseason berth at home. The Athletics need just one win to qualify for the postseason; they'd be the fourth team ever to qualify for the playoffs after finishing last in the division in the previous three seasons.
- The Mariners lost two of three at Texas to fall out of playoff contention for the 17th straight season, the longest active playoff drought in any of the four major sports. They've won 85 games despite a -35 run differential; that's the lowest run differential by a winning team since the 2009 Mariners (85-77, -52).
- The Mariners are one win away from clinching the season series with the Athletics for the sixth straight year, which would be the longest active streak in the AL. The Mariners have never taken a season series against a divisional opponent in six straight years.
- Daniel Mengden will make his first start since June 23 after a DL stint and some time in the bullpen. In his five bullpen appearances this season, he's posted a 1.83 ERA and a 0.92 ERA; in his five starts prior to going on the DL, he had a 8.88 ERA and a 1.73 WHIP.
- James Paxton will be making his 101st career start tonight, posting a 3.43 ERA through the first 100 starts of his career. That's the second-lowest ERA by a Mariner through 100 career starts with Seattle; only Hisashi Iwakuma (3.13) had a lower ERA.
- Stephen Piscotty has had a great September, hitting .338 with seven home runs. His .704 slugging percentage this month is tied for fourth in MLB among players with at least 50 PA in September.
- Encarnacion, Santana moved in 3-way deal
- Mets bring back Familia for 3 yrs., $30M
- Dodgers to ink P Kelly for 3 years, $25M
- M's GM pulls off trade from hospital bed
- Rangers sign RHP Lynn for 3 years, $30M
The Oakland Athletics will travel to Seattle with a little extra luggage.
Like several cases of champagne.
The A's were prevented from clinching an American League wild-card berth at home Sunday, suffering a 5-1 defeat to the Minnesota Twins.
"I think it was a little disappointing," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "A lot of times we put on our best shows late in games, unfortunately it didn't happen (Sunday)."
The A's (94-62) lead Tampa Bay by 7 1/2 games with their magic number down to one, meaning one Oakland victory or one Rays loss and the race is over.
The A's trail the New York Yankees by 1 1/2 games for the top wild-card berth, with the winner hosting the one-game playoff.
"It would have been nice to clinch, but we weren't changing anything up or anything like that," Oakland first baseman Matt Olson said.
The Twins' Kyle Gibson stymied the A's on Sunday by allowing just one run over 7 1/3 innings
"For the last couple of years we've seen people celebrate when we're in town," Gibson said. "To be able to finish off the season and not have to watch anybody celebrate, kind of nice."
Right-hander Daniel Mengden (7-6, 4.00 ERA) is scheduled to make his first start since June 23 for Oakland and will face Mariners left-hander James Paxton (11-6, 3.83 ERA), who has been sidelined by pneumonia since Sept. 7.
Mengden is 0-2 with a 6.23 ERA in three career appearances against the Mariners. He worked two innings of relief in an 8-7 loss on Sept. 1 in Oakland, allowing four runs (three earned) on five hits with one walk and one strikeout.
Paxton is 4-0 with a 3.70 ERA in nine career starts against Oakland. He has faced the A's three times previously this season. He struck out a career-high 16 in seven innings but didn't get a decision on May 2 in Seattle; left after one-third of an inning after being hit on his pitching arm by a Jed Lowrie line drive Aug. 14 in Oakland; and beat the A's in that Sept. 1 game, allowing three runs on two hits in innings, with four walks and 10 strikeouts.
The Mariners were eliminated from the wild-card chase Saturday, despite defeating the Texas Rangers 13-0. Later that evening, the A's beat Minnesota 3-2 on a walk-off wild pitch.
Manager Scott Servais said the Mariners (85-70) had already accepted their fate.
"The finality of it set in before the actual mathematical elimination," Servais said.
Despite losing 6-1 Sunday in Texas, the Mariners finished the road portion of their schedule with a 44-37 record, their second-most wins away from home since 2002.
"I think we've swung the bat better on the road than we have at home," Servais said. "I've often said you have to hit to on the road to win. Obviously, that's what we didn't do enough of (Sunday). But overall, we have had some good trips and some good series on the road, but it just hasn't been enough."
Updated September 24, 2018