OAKLAND (KRON) – The Oakland Athletics (97-65) struggled to find rhythm tonight as the Tampa Bay Rays (96-66) went on to defeat Oakland, 5-1 in the AL Wild Card game.
The crowd was louder than ever before breaking a Wild Card record with 54,0005 people in attendance at the Coliseum.
In playoff baseball anything can happen.
With yellow rally towels waiving high and fans cheering loud on their feet, it wasn’t enough for Oakland to walk away with a win.
Tampa Bay started off hot as Yandy Diaz homered to right off the second pitch, taking an early lead.
Avisail Garcia followed in suit in the second inning crushing a two-run, 437 foot homer, with Duffy (former Giant) coming into score taking an early lead, 3-0.
Tampa Bay didn’t end the regular season anywhere near MLB’s home run leaderboard, 21st to be exact.
But tonight the Rays have proven they can hit plenty.
Following Diaz’s first homer, Garcia had one in the second, Diaz hit his second one in the third and Pham homered to center in the fifth.
The first three homeruns were hit off Oakland starter, Sean Manaea.
Rays, first baseman Yandy Diaz, who was just activated from the IL on Sunday, managed to be the first lead-off hitter to ever homer in his first two at-bats of a single post season.
Tampa Bay’s pitcher Charlie Morton, finished the night only giving up one unearned run and five hits, in five innings.
This game makes Oakland’s ninth consecutive loss in winner-take-all games.
Tampa Bay will advance to the American League Division Series to take on the Houston Astros on Friday.
The Oakland A’s president Dave Kaval, took to Twitter Wednesday night thanking Oakland for an amazing season.
Oakland Mayor Libby Schaff also took to social media stating, “Great + gritty season, A’s. TY to all the players who persevered with Oakland resilience. We’re #RootedinOakland. “
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