OAKLAND -- The A's rallied against Tigers closer Francisco Rodriguez for their second walk-off celebration in as many days Sunday, capped by Ryon Healy's two-run homer in an 8-6 series-winning victory."You can't really mimic that feeling. It's really special," Healy said. "I don't think there was ever the sense of
OAKLAND -- The A's rallied against Tigers closer Francisco Rodriguez for their second walk-off celebration in as many days Sunday, capped by Ryon Healy's two-run homer in an 8-6 series-winning victory.
"You can't really mimic that feeling. It's really special," Healy said. "I don't think there was ever the sense of knowing that we were out of it. We always knew that we were going to compete, and that no matter what the score was, we had an opportunity."
Detroit erased two deficits in the game, getting a two-run blast from James McCann in the sixth inning to put them ahead, 6-5, while the A's sat back and waited until the ninth inning to pounce again.
Rajai Davis drew a leadoff walk from Rodriguez, who also blew the save in Saturday's wild affair, and scored on Jed Lowrie's ensuing game-tying double. Khris Davis flew out for the first out, before Healy stepped to the plate and drove one out of the park via left field to end the game.
"I thought it might hit a seagull, to tell you the truth," A's manager Bob Melvin said, smiling. "There were like 400 of them circling at that point in time, and if it hits a seagull and comes down, you just play it. But you had to wait. It was rather high, so depending on the wind here sometimes it knocks it down, but thank goodness it didn't."
"I can't recall going through such a bad moment like I'm going through right now," said Rodriguez, who has four blown saves. "I'm extremely disappointed. Just want to send out apologies to my team and the fans. Totally embarrassed. More embarrassed than anything else."
The back-and-forth contest featured yet another home run from A's first baseman Yonder Alonso, a two-run shot off Tigers lefty Daniel Norris that extended Oakland's lead to 4-1 in the fourth. It was his third in two days and ninth overall to tie his career high. But Alonso was also responsible for a fielding error in the fifth that paved the way for three unearned runs against A's starter Sonny Gray, allowing Detroit to tie the game.
Trevor Plouffe temporarily put the A's ahead again in the bottom half of the inning with an RBI single before the Tigers responded with two runs in the seventh, courtesy of McCann's homer off A's reliever Ryan Dull.
"It's not a fun way to lose games," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "You lose games when you have a lead in the ninth inning, it's not a fun way to lose games. Still, it's early May. We've got plenty of time. We certainly need to make sure that we lock down games like this on a more regular basis."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Rosales' knock: A's shortstop Adam Rosales, the hero of Saturday's dramatic walk-off victory, was at it again in the early stages of Sunday's affair, picking up where he left off with an RBI double in the third inning to tie the game at 1. One out later, Davis doubled him home as the A's grabbed their first lead of the day. The inning began with a costly throwing error by Tigers second baseman Dixon Machado, allowing Chad Pinder to reach base ahead of Rosales.
Wahl to the rescue: Following Dull's exit, the A's still had to come up with three innings from a thin bullpen, opening up an opportunity for right-hander Bobby Wahl. The rookie reliever responded with two scoreless innings, allowing just one walk and fanning two to keep the A's within one run. Santiago Casilla took over in the ninth and was awarded the win.
"You know, similar to last night, there were so many contributions from so many guys today," Melvin said. "I mean, where are we without Bobby Wahl throwing two innings there? We're one run down, and down some guys in the bullpen, and somebody else has to step up. Bobby Wahl was absolutely fantastic. Everybody. It just seemed like it was a total team effort."
"Since I got up here it's been so much fun," said Wahl, who was promoted last week. "To have two walk-offs in a row like that, it's pretty cool, pretty awesome. Just to come in there and do my job, keep it close, was good for the team. I'm glad we pulled it out."
The A's challenged the call that Justin Upton was safe on a stolen-base attempt in the second inning. Following a review, the call was overturned and Upton was ruled out.
Tigers: The Tigers have a scheduled off-day Monday before opening a two-game set at Arizona in their first interleague action of the year. Justin Verlander will counter southpaw Robbie Ray in Tuesday's series opener at 9:40 p.m. ET.
Athletics: The A's will welcome the Angels for a three-game series at the Coliseum beginning Monday. Right-hander Kendall Graveman, who is 1-1 with a 3.00 ERA in two starts against Los Angeles this season, will be on the mound in the 7:05 p.m. PT opener.
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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010.
Alex Espinoza is a contributor to MLB.com based in Oakland, and covered the Tigers on Sunday.