A’s beat first-place Rangers to avoid 3-game sweep



OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Coco Crisp hit a go-ahead single in the eighth inning, and the Oakland Athletics beat the first-place Texas Rangers 4-3 on Thursday to avoid a series sweep.

The reigning AL champion Rangers began the day with a magic number of three to clinch their second straight AL West crown. The Angels were playing at Toronto in a night game.

Grant Balfour (5-2) pitched a 1-2-3 eighth for the win, then Andrew Bailey finished for his 21st save in 23 chances as the A’s snapped Texas’ four-game winning streak and handed the Rangers just their second loss in 10 games.

Pinch-hitter Scott Sizemore hit a tying RBI groundout in the seventh against Darren Oliver. Crisp’s hit came against Mike Adams (1-3) and helped stop a three-game skid.