Oakland A’s history: Remembering Khris Davis’ three home run game

OAKLAND, CA - MAY 17: Khris Davis #2 of the Oakland Athletics celebrate after he hit a walk off grand slam home run against the Texas Rangers in the bottom of the ninth inning at O.co Coliseum on May 17, 2016 in Oakland, California. The Athletics won the game 8-5. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - MAY 17: Khris Davis #2 of the Oakland Athletics celebrate after he hit a walk off grand slam home run against the Texas Rangers in the bottom of the ninth inning at O.co Coliseum on May 17, 2016 in Oakland, California. The Athletics won the game 8-5. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /
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The Oakland A’s have had 28 three home run games in franchise history, but Khris Davis’ performance may be the most memorable.

Since being acquired by the Oakland A’s, Khris Davis has become a fearsome slugger in the middle of the lineup. His 2019 season notwithstanding, he has been a consistent slugger, a key part of the A’s lineup since his acquisition from the Brewers prior to the 2016 season.

While Davis had been a good player during his one full season in Milwaukee, he truly announced his presence on May 17, 2016. He had already belted two home runs against the Rangers Cole Hamels earlier that day, solo home runs in the second and sixth innings.

Davis came to the plate with the game on the line in the bottom of the ninth inning. Shawn Tolleson was attempting to close out the game for the Rangers, but had loaded the bases with one out. He had gotten Danny Valencia to fly out to right for the second out, bringing Davis up with Texas clinging to a 5-4 lead.

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With a 2-2 count, Davis ripped a line drive to deep left center, belting a walk-off grand slam as the A’s took an 8-5 victory. It marked the second time in major league history that a walk-off grand slam was the final blow in a three homer game; Joey Votto had belted one of his own back in 2012.

For Davis, that game catapulted what has been a successful run in Oakland. He ended the year with a .247/.307/.524 batting line; his 42 homers and 104 RBI both setting career highs. Prior to that game, Davis had produced a meager .214/.247/.421 batting line, albeit with eight homers in his 147 plate appearances.

From that point, Davis began to emerge as a star. He has been a key part of the A’s lineup, hitting over 40 homers three times, including his league leading 48 homers in 2018. Davis finished eighth in the MVP vote that year, giving plenty of hope that his disappointing 2019 was just an aberration.

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Sometimes, it takes one game for a player to truly feel comfortable. For Khris Davis, that game happened on May 17, 2016, when the Oakland A’s slugger became the second player in MLB history to cap off a three home run game with a walk-off grand slam.

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