Brett Anderson pitched five scoreless innings and the bullpen did the rest as the Oakland Athletics defeated the host Seattle Mariners 1-0 Saturday night to clinch home-field advantage for the American League’s wild-card playoff game.
The A’s (97-64) moved a game ahead of Tampa Bay in the wild-card race as the Rays lost 4-1 in Toronto. Oakland won the season series with Tampa Bay 4-3 to earn the tiebreaker.
The A’s will host the wild-card game on Wednesday at the Oakland Coliseum.
Ramon Laureano hit a solo homer with two outs in the top of the third off Mariners left-hander Marco Gonzales (16-13) to account for the game’s lone run.
Anderson (13-9), making his first start since Sept. 17 as the A’s attempted to limit his innings to reduce the stress on his arm, allowed three hits, walked one and struck out three.
Right-hander Yusmeiro Petit followed with 1 2/3 scoreless innings before lefty Jake Diekman took over with two outs in the bottom of the seventh. Pinch hitter Omar Narvaez and Tim Lopes both lined singles to center field before Diekman got Mallex Smith to line out to center to end the inning.
Left-hander Jesus Luzardo took over in the eighth and retired the side in order, striking out two. But Luzardo ran into some trouble in the ninth before recording his second career save.
With two outs, Tom Murphy lined a single to center. A wild pitch sent pinch runner Dee Gordon to second and pinch hitter Dylan Moore was hit by a pitch. But Luzardo got Lopes to pop out to shortstop Marcus Semien to end it.
The Mariners (67-94) have lost five of their past six games, scoring just six runs and being blanked three times in that span.
Gonzales went seven innings, allowing one run on five hits. He walked three and struck out four.
—Field Level Media