That wasn't the case Monday in a 1-0 series-opening loss to the Rays, who struck for three straight hits with two outs in the 13th inning against righty Chris Hatcher. Mallex Smith's RBI single produced the game's lone run.
Prior to the inning, the Rays had not recorded a hit since the sixth. The A's, meanwhile, left 10 on base in a lackluster display.
"I think with any team, once you get a little deeper into games, guys are trying to do a little too much. Be that hero," Melvin said. "There were probably some big swings, but the same thing on the other side."
A's starter Trevor Cahill was stellar in eight scoreless innings, his longest outing of the season. The veteran pitcher held the Rays to four hits, didn't walk a batter and struck out six. Twice he bailed himself out of identical jams: Tampa put runners on second and third in the third and sixth innings with nothing to show for it.
"Just filling the zone," Cahill said. "Just trying to throw strikes and get ahead. I was able to do that. Fell behind a few times, still able to get back in the count. The biggest thing was trusting myself and attacking the zone and knowing when to expand, not try to be too fine."
Cahill has been superb at home this season, allowing only two runs in 28 innings for a 0.64 ERA at the Coliseum. Not since May 17, 2013, as a member of the D-backs had he completed as many as eight innings.
"He's been great," Melvin said. "Unfortunately, he's the guy that we don't score a whole lot for. Seems like every time he's out there, when he comes out we're tied, like we did today. Didn't give up anything, so he's pitched great. He's pitched as well as he did back when he was here before."
Rays starter Chris Archer did his part with six scoreless in a game that was gridlocked for nearly four hours.
"Give their pitchers some credit," A's outfielder Stephen Piscotty said. "We battled. We did not win many of the battles, but we battled. We gave it our best effort. That's baseball sometimes. It's gonna happen."
The A's, who totaled just six runs in each of their previous three-game series against the Mariners and D-backs, have recorded only 12 overall in 64 innings on this 3-4 homestand. Davis has been missing from all of them because of a right groin strain, but could return as soon as Thursday, when he's eligible.
"I think we feel it, but it's no excuse," Piscotty said. "We just gotta keep going, keep grinding. We're a good offense. We just gotta believe in ourselves."
SOUND SMART The A's scored four or fewer runs in their 12th consecutive home game, their longest such streak since July 19 to Aug. 10, 2016.
HE SAID IT "We've talked about being on the other side of those when we've won, and it's tough to be on that side using that many guys and still not getting it done. Unfortunately, that was the case today. Our guys pitched well. We just couldn't swing the bats all that well, obviously." -- Melvin, on the A's offensive woes
MITEL REPLAY OF THE DAY The A's put two on with no out in the ninth, after Jed Lowrie doubled and Matt Olson walked against lefty Jose Alvarado. The Rays then turned to right-hander Matt Andriese, and Chad Pinder greeted him with an attempted sacrifice bunt. Lowrie, however, was called out at third base on a perfect throw from catcher Jesus Sucre -- a call that was upheld via replay. Matt Chapman proceeded to pop out, and Piscotty struck out to spoil a prime opportunity.
"It was a hell of a play," Melvin said. "That thing bounces, there's no chance to get him. So you've got to barehand it, throw on the run. Obviously, it was a big play in the course of the game."
UP NEXT The A's will turn to right-hander Daniel Gossett in Tuesday's 7:05 p.m. PT matchup against lefty Blake Snell (6-3, 2.78 ERA) and the Rays. Gossett was recalled from Triple-A Nashville last week for a start against the Mariners, and he was saddled with a tough-luck loss after twirling seven innings of one-run ball. Gossett yielded four hits, walked one and fanned five.
Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010.