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Anaheim at Oakland

L.A. Angels
W: J. Saunders (16-7) L: J. Gray (0-1)
S: K. Jepsen (1)
HR: ANA - M. Napoli (20)   OAK - None

Angels 5, Athletics 3

CBSSports.com wire reports

OAKLAND, Calif. -- Joe Saunders got a shot for his ailing left shoulder in August and has felt great ever since.

Saunders pitched five effective innings, Mike Napoli homered and the Los Angeles Angels closed out an impressive regular season with a 5-3 victory over the Oakland Athletics on Sunday.

The AL West champions swept the three-game set against the A's and will host the Boston Red Sox in Game 1 of their division series Wednesday or Thursday. Saunders (16-7) allowed two runs and six hits as the Angels marked their 100th day in first place.

Saunders improved to 7-0 with a 2.55 ERA in eight starts since he was activated in August following a stint on the disabled list for left shoulder irritation, a problem he began to experience during spring training.

"I took the shot and it cleared the knot out," he said. "Since then I've told myself to come back strong and show them I can do what I can do.

"When I came back I felt good. The tightness was out of there and the soreness was out of there. Now it's time to get ready for the postseason."

Erick Aybar had three hits for Los Angeles (97-65) in the regular-season finale. Bobby Abreu, Torii Hunter and Kendry Morales each drove in a run.

"He's one of the young guys who has turned into a difference maker," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said of Aybar. "Not only at the plate but more so in the field. He's hands down the Gold Glove shortstop. There's not many who can combine his range with his ability to turn the double play. He's played incredible defense."

Eric Patterson had two hits and an RBI for last-place Oakland (75-87), which lost its last seven games of the year. Jeff Gray (0-1) gave up three runs and three hits in 1 1/3 innings.

"It wasn't the way we wanted to finish," manager Bob Geren said. "We made too many mistakes at the end. This last six or seven weeks we've played some good baseball. This past week was not one of them."

Ervin Santana followed Saunders with two scoreless innings, striking out the side in the seventh. Darren Oliver worked the eighth and Kevin Jepsen got the final three outs for his first career save.

Gray was the third of seven A's pitchers in the all-bullpen start. Rookie Brad Kilby opened the game with two scoreless innings.

"It's been the best month and four days of my life," Kilby said. "It's one more start than I have in the minor leagues."

Nomar Garciaparra collected two hits in what was likely his final game in an A's uniform. He received a standing ovation after he struck out in the eighth.

Napoli led off the third with his 20th homer and the Angels added three runs in the fifth to take a 4-2 lead. Abreu had a run-scoring groundout, Hunter added an RBI double and Morales singled in the final run.

Napoli also scored on Craig Breslow's balk in the sixth.

Matt Carson had a sacrifice fly and Patterson hit an RBI single to give Oakland a 2-0 lead in the second. Cliff Pennington had singled in a run in the ninth.


The Angels finished with an AL-high 48 road wins. ... The Angels set a team record for fielding percentage, committing a franchise-low 84 errors. ... Saunders improved to 4-1 against the A's this season. ... Aybar finished with a career-best 157 hits. ... Morales has nine RBI in his last six games. ... The A's spent the last 155 days in sole possession of last place and a franchise-record 161 days overall. ... Oakland's Kurt Suzuki became the second catcher to lead the A's in RBI with 88, joining Frankie Hayes (78) in 1944. ... Kilby's strikeout of Abreu in the first set a franchise record. The pitching staff finished with 1,124 strikeouts.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Players of the Game

M. Napoli
AB 3
R 3
H 2
HR 1

J. Saunders
IP 5.0
H 6
ER 2
BB 2
K 3

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a-grounded out for Abreu in the 6th
2B - Torii Hunter (26, Gray)
HR - Mike Napoli (20, Blevins)
RBI - Bobby Abreu (103), Torii Hunter (90), Kendry Morales (108), Mike Napoli (56)
2-OUT RBI - Torii Hunter (34), Kendry Morales (45)
Team LOB - 6
Outfield Assists - Juan Rivera 1
DP - J. Rivera-Napoli-Aybar, Aybar-Kendrick-Morales, Figgins-Kendrick-Morales, Morales-Wood
E - Brandon Wood (3, Throwing)
Los Angeles Angels
Joe Saunders (W,16-7) 5622230 4.60
Ervin Santana (H,1) 2300030 5.03
Darren Oliver (H,20) 1100020 2.71
Kevin Jepsen (S,1) 1210010 4.94
Pitches-Strikes - Joe Saunders 84-54, Ervin Santana 30-22, Darren Oliver 23-13, Kevin Jepsen 19-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joe Saunders 5-4, Ervin Santana 2-0, Kevin Jepsen 2-0
Batters Faced - Joe Saunders 20, Ervin Santana 8, Darren Oliver 4, Kevin Jepsen 5
Oakland Athletics
Rajai Davis, CF5010023 .305
Mark Ellis, 2B4000011 .263
Kurt Suzuki, C4010010 .274
Nomar Garciaparra, DH3120111 .281
Bobby Crosby, 3B2110001 .223
   a- Adam Kennedy, PH-3B2000002 .289
Daric Barton, 1B3020110 .269
Matt Carson, RF2011011 .286
   b- Jack Cust, PH1100000 .240
Eric Patterson, LF4021012 .287
Cliff Pennington, SS4021012 .279
a-grounded into a double play for Crosby in the 6th
b-hit into fielder's choice for Carson in the 9th
2B - Rajai Davis (27, Saunders)
SF - Matt Carson (1)
RBI - Matt Carson (5), Eric Patterson (11), Cliff Pennington (21)
2-OUT RBI - Eric Patterson (4), Cliff Pennington (12)
SB - Eric Patterson (6, 2nd base off Saunders/Napoli)
Team LOB - 7
DP - Ellis-Pennington-Barton, Kennedy-Ellis-Barton
E - Cliff Pennington (8, Throwing)
Oakland Athletics
Brad Kilby 2000110 0.53
Jerry Blevins 1.1311101 4.84
Jeff Gray (L,0-1) 1.1333010 3.76
Craig Breslow 1.1311020 3.36
Brad Ziegler 1000100 3.07
Michael Wuertz 1000020 2.63
Andrew Bailey 1000010 1.84
HBP - Napoli (by Jeff Gray)
Pitches-Strikes - Brad Kilby 30-19, Jerry Blevins 29-17, Jeff Gray 20-15, Craig Breslow 26-21, Brad Ziegler 14-10, Michael Wuertz 15-9, Andrew Bailey 12-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brad Kilby 2-3, Jerry Blevins 1-2, Jeff Gray 2-1, Craig Breslow 1-1, Brad Ziegler 1-1
Batters Faced - Brad Kilby 7, Jerry Blevins 7, Jeff Gray 8, Craig Breslow 7, Brad Ziegler 3, Michael Wuertz 3, Andrew Bailey 3
Game Information
Attendance - 16591
Game Time - 2:38
Temperature - 57
Umpires - Home - Angel Campos, First Base - Jim Joyce, Second Base - Bill Miller, Third Base - Derryl Cousins