OAKLAND, Calif. — Same chaotic, champagne dance-party scene in the clubhouse just two days later. New T-shirt: AL West champions.
The Athletics won the division title with another improbable rally in a season full of them, coming back from four runs down and a 13-game division deficit to stun the two-time defending league champion Rangers 12-5 Wednesday.
"We knew this is a beast of a team we would have to beat, and to be able to beat them three games in a row and win the division on top of it, really it's a magical-type thing," manager Bob Melvin said.
Josh Hamilton dropped a fly in centerfield for a two-run error that put the A's ahead 7-5 in a six-run fourth.
While Hamilton's Rangers are headed to the new one-game wild-card playoff, the A's get some time off before opening the AL Division Series in their first postseason appearance since 2006.
Oakland overcame a five-game deficit in the final nine days and took sole possession of first for the first time.
"It shows how important Game 162 is," former Ray Jonny Gomes said. "I don't think it took 162 games to check the character of this ballclub."