OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) – Tired as he was, Matt Olson had enough left to get the ball past the outfielders and end the third-longest game by time in Oakland Athletics history.
Olson singled over left fielder Nicky Delmonico to drive in Marcus Semien with two outs in the 14th and the A’s beat the Chicago White Sox 12-11 in a wild game that lasted nearly six hours Wednesday.
“That was awesome to be in that long of a game, kind of back and forth,” Olson said. “It was just like a heavyweight fight. We kept trading blows the whole game and then finally at the end we were able to get that one.”
The teams combined for 555 pitches, 33 hits and 18 walks -12 by Chicago pitchers – in a game that lasted 5 hours and 48 minutes. The White Sox fell to 4-11, matching their worst start since 1997.
The A’s trailed 6-1, 9-4 and 10-8, then gave up a tying run in the ninth before scoring the winning run off James Shields (1-1) five innings later.
“You really want it to end and guys have a tendency to want to be that guy to hit a home run,” Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. “Sometimes that’s why those games go a little bit longer is you don’t have your typical approach. But we did in the last inning.”
Semien singled with two outs in the 14th and stole second. After Shields walked Jed Lowrie and Khris Davis, Olson lined an 0-1 pitch deep to left, and Delmonico watched it go over his head.
“The longer the game went on the better I felt at the plate,” Olson said of his first career game-ending hit. “It’s one of those where you just need to find a way to push one across.”
Lou Trivino (1-0) pitched three innings for his first major league win. He made his big league debut in a 10-2 win over Chicago on Tuesday.
Both bullpens got depleted. Shields was scheduled to start against Houston on Friday but instead became the 10th pitcher used by White Sox manager Rick Renteria.
The A’s were down to their last reliever and even had outfielder Jake Smolinski warming up to pitch at one point.
“This game was the sign of a true fight,” Renteria said. “It’s a relentless effort to continually try and win every inning. Ultimately we go with James at the end.”
Olson finished with four hits and three RBIs, Lowrie also drove in three and Mark Canha homered to help the A’s complete the three-game sweep of the White Sox. Stephen Piscotty added two hits to extend his hitting streak to eight games.
“To keep battling through those extra innings, knowing it’s approaching five hours, approaching six hours, shows a lot about the character of the guys on this team,” Piscotty said.
Chicago lost its fourth straight despite a big day by leadoff hitter Yoan Moncada. Moncada hit his first career grand slam, scored three times and matched his career high of four RBIs.
Neither starter made it out of the second inning. Oakland’s Andrew Triggs retired four batters and allowed six runs on five hits with a hit batter. The right-hander had yielded five runs total in his first three starts. Carson Fulmer of the White Sox allowed a run in the first then gave up Canha’s leadoff home run in the second followed by a single and two walks before getting pulled.
“We were both pretty lousy and the results showed it,” Triggs said.
White Sox: Kevan Smith (sprained left ankle) went 2 for 5 with two RBIs as part of his rehab stint with Triple-A Charlotte.
White Sox: Shields was scheduled to pitch against Houston on Friday in Chicago but that could change. Renteria said a decision has not been made yet.
Athletics: RHP Kendall Graveman (0-3, 9.87 ERA) pitches the opener of a three-game series against Boston on Friday at the Coliseum. Graveman has allowed four runs or more in each of his four starts this season.
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