The game was already long and there would be another one. Evan Longoria wanted to get it over.
“We didn’t need more extra innings in a game like today,” Longoria said after his RBI single in the 10th inning lifted the Tampa Bay Rays over the Oakland Athletics 6-5 Saturday. “It’s been quite a while since I’ve gotten a walk-off hit. It felt good.”
The Rays’ fourth straight win came in the opener of the majors’ first regularly scheduled doubleheader since 2011.
Oakland, which scored a run in the ninth to tie it, lost despite getting a season-high 16 hits.
Peter Bourjos led off the 10th with a single, advanced on a wild pitch by Liam Hendriks (2-1) and scored on Longoria’s third hit of the game.
It was Longoria’s eighth career walkoff hit, but his first since a two-run homer against San Diego on May 11, 2013.
“He’s gotten tons of hits in his career,” manager Kevin Cash said. “That was one we needed, and I think he probably needed, too. He’s been spinning a little bit, showing a little bit of frustration.”
Austin Pruitt (5-1) won in relief.
Oakland starter Sonny Gray struck out 10 while giving up five runs, only two of them earned, in six innings.
Steven Souza Jr. and Tim Beckham each drove in two runs for the Rays.
The A’s led off the third with five straight hits off Erasmo Ramirez to take a 3-0 lead. Jed Lowrie drove in the first run with a double and Khris Davis and Yonder Alonso followed with RBI singles.
They had a chance to build the lead in the fourth when they loaded the bases with none out and came up empty.
“We had a chance to blow the game open,” Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. “We left a lot (13) on base. Earlier in the game we had a lot better chance to win because we put together some at bats.”
Souza hit a two-run single in the fourth and Beckham put the Rays ahead 4-3 with a two-out, two-run double in the sixth.
The Rays added another run in the sixth when catcher Josh Phegley mishandled a throw enabling Beckham to score from second base on Michael Martinez‘s infield single. It was Oakland’s second error of the game and major league-worst 61st of the season.
Ryon Healy hit an RBI single in the A’s seventh. Back-to-back doubles by Alonso and Healy off Alex Colome tied it at 5 in the ninth.
A’s center fielder Jaycob Brugman got his first major league hit, a sixth-inning single off Ramirez.
Oakland bounced back to win the nightcap, 7-2.
The last regularly scheduled doubleheader in the majors was on July 11, 2011, when the A’s hosted the Angels. This was the second doubleheader at Tropicana Field – the other was Sept. 30, 2004, when two games against the Detroit Tigers had to be rescheduled because of Hurricane Frances.
Athletics: RHP Andrew Triggs was put on the disabled list with a strained left hip after giving up eight runs in 3 2/3 innings Friday night. OF Matt Olson was recalled from Nashville to take Triggs’ roster spot.
Rays: RHP Matt Andriese (strained groin) was activated to pitch the second game. His last start was May 30. … C Wilson Ramos (recovery from torn ACL) may soon have his rehab upgraded from Class A Charlotte to Triple-A Durham.
Republished with permission from the Associated Press.