Stephen Ellison

Chapman’s Clutch Homer in Ninth Leads A’s Past Angels

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ANAHEIM (AP) Matt Chapman hit a two-run homer with one out in the ninth inning and the Oakland Athletics boosted their playoff chances, rallying past the Los Angeles Angels 3-2 on Wednesday night.

Oakland remained a half-game ahead of Tampa Bay for the first AL wild-card spot. Cleveland fell two games behind the A's.

Ramon Laureano also homered and the A's avoided their first three-game losing streak since July 24-26.

Oakland right-hander Frankie Montas was effective in his return after serving an 80-game suspension for testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance, giving up one run in six innings. He allowed four hits and two walks, while striking out six.

Joakim Soria (2-4) threw one inning of scoreless relief, and Liam Hendriks got his 24th save.

Chapman hit his 35th homer on the first pitch he saw from Hansel Robles (5-1). Marcus Semien started the comeback with a leadoff single, reaching second on a sacrifice bunt by Laureano to set up Chapman's 436-foot shot to center. The A's had been 1 for 14 with runners in scoring position before Chapman connected.

Kaleb Cowart had an RBI double and Taylor Ward hit a solo homer, but the Angels lost seven of their final eight games to the A's.

Cowart gave the Angels a 2-1 lead in the seventh. Oakland had failed to go ahead in the top half of the seventh when Mark Canha hit into a double play with the bases loaded.

Laureano tied it at 1 in the fifth with a solo homer.

The Angels took a 1-0 lead in the second on Ward's first homer of the season and seventh of his career.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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