MLB Baseball

Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
Oakland0 0 1 1 0 1 2 2 0 7100
Seattle1 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 360
  W: R. Buchter (5-0)   L: S. Armstrong (0-1)
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

(AP Photo/Tony Avelar)

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

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