OAKLAND — In the penultimate home game of 2017, Khris Davis tied his career high by blasting his 42nd home run of the season and his 84th in two years with the Oakland A’s.
The 421-foot shot marked the 20th time this season that Davis has put the club ahead with a home run.
Danny Valencia made sure the lead wouldn’t last for long. Half an inning after Davis gave the A’s a 3-2 lead in the sixth, the one-time Oakland corner infielder Danny Valencia boomed a three-run shot, putting the Seattle Mariners on their way to an 6-3 win.
“A game like that kind of stings,” manager Bob Melvin said. “We had a chance to win it and we didn’t.”
The Mariners originally pushed ahead in the fourth courtesy of another ex-A’s player, Yonder Alonso. The first baseman deposited a home run beyond the right-field wall for the second time in as many days.
Like Valencia’s go-ahead drive, Alonso’s came on a 0-2 offering — a detail that did not sit well with Melvin.
“Yes. The short answer to that is, ‘yeah,’” Melvin said. “We’ve got to make better pitches at 0-2 — especially the 0-2 to Danny with Ryan [Dull]’s slider.”
Alonso’s 27th homer, which triples his previous career high, erased what had been a 1-0 lead for the hosts.
Marcus Semien led off the game with a long ball, his second in as many games, to hand Daniel Mengden an immediate advantage. Mengden, who was making his fourth start since subbing in for the sidelined Paul Blackburn, worked six-plus innings, allowing four runs on five hits and three walks.
Melvin on KD: ‘One of the best’
After yet another Davis home run, Melvin lauded the left fielder’s pop and his impact on the young A’s.
“One of the best pure power hitters in the league — to any field,” Melvin said. “And certainly with guys like [Ryon] Healy and [Matt] Olson and [Matt] Chapman and these guys a lot can be learned from how he goes about his business.”
— Karl Buscheck (@KarlBuscheck) September 27, 2017
Smolinski makes a grab
Jake Smolinski, who missed the majority of the season while recovering from shoulder surgery, made a spectacular running grab into the fourth, barreling into the center-field wall. In the process of robbing Robinson Cano, Smolinski’s right shoulder took the brunt of the impact.