ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Matt Chapman homered and hit a go-ahead double with two outs in the ninth inning, leading the Oakland Athletics over the Tampa Bay Rays 3-2 Thursday.
Shane McClanahan, a Tampa Bay left-hander starting on the day after his 24th birthday, made an unusual regular-season debut, becoming the fourth player to appear in the regular season after first playing in the postseason.
Throwing at up to 100.5 mph, he was given a 1-0 lead when Austin Meadows hit an RBI double in the first off Chris Bassitt.
Ramón Laureano’s run-scoring double tied the score in the third, and Chapman put Oakland ahead 2-1 in the fourth with his fourth homer this season. Brandon Lowe tied the score an inning later with his fourth homer.
Jed Lowrie walked off Diego Castillo (0-2) with one out in the ninth, Sean Murphy flied out and Chapman doubled over the glove of right fielder Brett Phillips, who tried for a leaping catch at the front of the warning track.
Jake Diekman (1-0) pitched a perfect eighth, and Lou Trivino finished for his fourth save in four chances. Phillips singled with two outs in the ninth, and Kevin Kiermaier took a full-count changeup for a game-ending called third strike.
McClanahan made his first appearance last Oct. 5 in the Division Series against the Yankees and got into four postseason games, including World Series Game 3. He joined Oakland infielder Mark Kiger (2006), Kansas City infielder Adalberto Mondesi (2015) and Minnesota outfielder Alex Kirilloff (last Sept. 30) as playing in the postseason before the regular season.
McClanahan gave up two runs and five hits in four innings, struck out five and walked none, throwing 42 of 59 pitches for strikes.
He struck out four of his first five batters, including Mark Canha leading off the game with his fastest pitch. McClanahan threw 24 fastballs and 24 sliders, mixing in 11 changeups.
Laureano’s double was Oakland’s third straight hit off McClanahan. Phillips threw out Tony Kemp at the plate trying to score on a hit by Canha.
Bassitt allowed two runs and four hits in six innings with nine strikeouts.