OAKLAND – It had been 20 years since the Baltimore Orioles and Oakland A’s had played each other in September with both clubs boasting winning records.
These versions of the A’s and Orioles may not be experienced in playing meaningful September games, but they did their part on Friday night, trading blows until the A’s eventually walked away with a 3-2 victory before an announced crowd of 35,067.
The loss keeps the Orioles (81-63) in a first-place tie with the New York Yankees, who also lost Friday. The A’s (83-61) are two games up on the Orioles for the first wild card spot, meaning they would host a one-game wild card playoff against the Orioles if the season ended today.
The Orioles got on the board first when Manny Machado scored in the third inning on a two-out grounder that A’s third baseman Josh Donaldson misplayed.
The Orioles lost the lead in the fourth when Yoenis Cespedes, the impressive Cuban defector whom the Orioles scouted this past winter, hit a two-run homer. Cespedes, who left Thursday’s game in Los Angeles in the fifth inning with a right wrist injury and was questionable for Friday’s contest, has 19 homers.
The Orioles got their final run against rookie Tommy Milone (13-10) in the fifth on Chris Davis’s 26th homer of the season.
The Orioles hit into four double plays, including three to end innings. The game ended when pinch-runner Xavier Avery attempted to steal second with two outs in the ninth and Davis at the plate.
— Baltimore Sun