ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Mark Canha had a three-run homer and Danny Valencia a two-run shot in the fifth inning, leading the Oakland Athletics over the Texas Rangers 5-3 on Saturday night.
Despite the loss, Texas gained a half-game on the AL wild card-leading Yankees, who were swept in a doubleheader by Toronto but hold a three-game edge. The Rangers remained a game ahead of Minnesota for the second wild card.
Oakland had been shut out for 16 consecutive innings before Canha’s three-run shot, his 15th of the season, off Yovani Gallardo.
Left-hander Sean Nolin (1-1) limited Texas to four hits in 5 2-3 innings, including a solo homer by Mike Napoli in the second.
Gallardo (12-10) lost for the first time in nine starts, ending a five-decision winning streak.
Canha is the American League rookie leader in RBIs with 63.
Two batters after Canha’s homer into the left-field corner, Valencia hit a two-run drive to left, his 14th of the year.
On Friday night, Valencia broke up Rangers right-hander Colby Lewis’ bid for a perfect game leading off the eighth inning with a double.
Gallardo lasted only 4 1-3 innings and hasn’t gone more than six innings since June.
Nolin was recalled from Triple-A Nashville on Sept. 4. He was acquired last winter from Toronto in the multiplayer deal that sent Josh Donaldson to the Blue Jays.
Sam Fuld, Oakland’s No. 9 hitter, went 2 for 3, including the first hit of Oakland’s five-run inning. Fuld went into play in a 3-for-40 slump.
Texas’ Shin-Soo Choo extended his hitting streak to 12 games and has reached base in 32 of his last 33 games.
The Rangers’ Elvis Andrus ended an 0-for-21 drought with a career-high three doubles.
Napoli hit .207 this season for Boston. Since being reacquired by Texas on Aug. 7, he has hit .286 with three homers in 41 at-bats.
Texas recalled outfielder Ryan Rua from Triple-A Round Rock before the game, and he started in left field.
A’s: OF Billy Burns (groin) missed his second consecutive game, and manager Bob Melvin indicated Burns will probably miss Sunday afternoon’s series finale.
Rangers: General manager Jon Daniels said the hope is that OF Josh Hamilton, who had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee on Friday, can return this season.
Athletics: Won all four games started by LHP Felix Doubront (3-1), who was acquired from Toronto on July 31.
Rangers: RHP Chi Chi Gonzalez (2-5) won both of his first two starts when recalled in late May, including a shutout of Kansas City, but has since had five losses and two no-decisions.