ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — After Khris Davis went deep twice to reach 40 homers, the young Oakland Athletics slugger and his manager were already talking about more.
“I told him 45 was more impressive than 40,” manager Bob Melvin said.
Davis’ homers and three RBIs led the Athletics past Texas 5-2 on Sunday and kept the Rangers from moving closer to the AL West title.
Davis is the first A’s player to hit 40 homers since Jason Giambi had 43 in 2000. Davis has 10 homers in 15 games against Texas, breaking Oakland’s single-season franchise record for homers against the Rangers. Reggie Jackson had nine in 1974.
“He’s pretty good,” Davis said with a smile. “I feel comfortable against their guys. The numbers don’t lie, and I like hitting off them.”
Davis lined a solo shot to left field in the fourth off Colby Lewis (6-3). In the eighth, he sliced a two-run shot down the right-field line off Keone Kela, and had a huge smile on his face rounding the bases for the 40th time this season — and 100th time in his career.
“It was just because everybody’s been knocking at me for it, so I was just like it’s out of the way,” Davis said. “My teammates were happy for me, so I enjoyed that one. ... We’ve still got a couple of more weeks. I don’t know why 45 is out of the question.”
The A’s have 13 games remaining, including three games next weekend against Texas to wrap up their home schedule.
With two weeks left in the regular season, the magic number for the AL-leading Rangers (88-62) to clinch the division title remained at five games.
While already guaranteed consecutive losing seasons for the first time since 2007-09, the A’s (66-83) won two of three in Texas to wrap up a 6-1 road trip in which they scored 65 runs. The only loss on the trip was in the Friday night opener against Texas when the Rangers scored twice with two outs in the ninth.
“That was a great trip. Beating Kansas City four in a row, losing just a really, really tough game here and responding the next two games,” Melvin said. “I can’t say enough about the desire and commitment these guys still have to finishing out the season strong.”
Left-hander Ross Detwiler (2-3) went 5 1/3 innings and limited the Rangers to two runs after going 0-3 with a 6.75 ERA in his previous six games. Ryan Dull pitched the ninth for his third save in five chances.
Texas got its runs with four consecutive hits off Detwiler with one out in the third.
Detwiler nearly gave up more runs with two outs in the fifth. Adrian Beltre hit a line drive toward the center field wall. Rookie center fielder Brett Eibner raced back and made a diving catch near the warning track.
“Eibner’s might be the play of the game because if that gets by now we’re in a completely different game,” Melvin said. “When the ball was hit, I didn’t think he would catch it.”
HEALY HEATING UP
In addition to Davis’ eight-game hitting streak, 3B Ryon Healy has a nine-game streak after two hits Sunday. He hit .467 (14 or 30) on the trip.
WHO’S IN FIRST?
The A’s haven’t played against Texas like a team that trails the Rangers by 21 1/2 games. The teams have split 16 games this season. “We just put our head down and do our job, and expect to win no matter who we’re playing,” Melvin said.
Athletics: Sonny Gray (strained right forearm) is expected to throw another bullpen session Tuesday.
Athletics: Oakland starts its final homestand of the season on Monday night against Houston.