Davis' 43rd HR, Mengden's gem lift A's to win

Davis' 43rd HR, Mengden's gem lift A's to win

ARLINGTON -- Athletics outfielder Khris Davis had one more blast for the Rangers before the season was over.

Davis hit his 43rd home run in the eighth inning on Sunday afternoon in the Athletics' 5-2 victory over the Rangers. The home run gave Davis a career high, one more than last season.

"Is that good?" Davis said, smiling. "I'll try to do it again next year."

The home run off Rangers rookie left-hander Yohander Mendez was his seventh this season against the Rangers and 17th in the past two years. That's the most by any player against a single opponent in that stretch.

Mengden works seven scoreless

Right-hander Daniel Mengden continues to make a case he should be in the Athletics' rotation next season as he pitched seven scoreless innings. Mengden allowed four hits and a walk while striking out eight. He finished the season by going 3-1 with a 1.54 ERA in five September starts.

"Unbelievable, really," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "That's the best work we've seen from him, and to come out of the pack, so to speak, like he did, and perform as well as he did at a time when we were struggling a little bit in our rotation. Not only did he solidify it and make us a lot better, certainly in the month of September, but put himself right back up there in the pecking order going into next season."

Mengden didn't give up a hit until Adrian Beltre smacked a single up the middle to lead off the fifth. Beltre, starting at designated hitter for the first time since Tuesday, was replaced by pinch-runner Joey Gallo. He received a standing ovation from the crowd and both dugouts, then came back for a curtain call.

Beltre singles, exits to ovation

"That was pretty cool," Beltre said. "It was a nice script for the ending. It was nice, the guys getting up and clapping for me, that was pretty cool."

 The Rangers' other big moment came in the eighth when Nomar Mazara lined a two-run double off of Athletics reliever Chris Hatcher. That gave him 101 RBIs for the year.

Rangers starter Cole Hamels allowed three runs in just three innings of work. Hamels was smacked in the left calf by a line drive from Davis in the second inning and left the game after allowing three runs in the third. But the Rangers were planning on a short day from Hamels anyway because they wanted to get an extended look at Mendez.

"I felt pretty good," Hamels said. "With just how the last game went, what I was really trying to accomplish in the bullpen and this last game with just making sure I could at least get ... in a good little rhythm and get the feel. It kind of seemed to come out the right way. Obviously, the results don't look that way, but I was able to get some pretty good identifiers that ... I'll prepare for to get ready for next season."

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
One more double for Lowrie: Jed Lowrie had a two-run double off Hamels to give the Athletics a 3-0 lead. It was his 49th double, the second most in the American League, and it extended his own Oakland Athletics record.

Lowrie's two-run double

Calhoun makes tremendous catch: Willie Calhoun's outfield defense has been a major topic of discussion, but he made a tremendous catch in the fourth. He raced deep into the left-center gap and made a diving catch on Marcus Semien's long drive.

Calhoun's spectacular catch

"The reaction off the bat, since he has been out there, has been good," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. "He has covered some ground, he has caught some tough balls, diving catches. 

T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.