OAKLAND, Calif. — Ron Washington is still waiting for his Texas lineup to start producing the timely hits that always seemed to be there during the Rangers' special 2010 run.
While it has only been a month, the offense is inconsistent.
Hideki Matsui clobbered the first pitch of the 10th inning from Darren Oliver and sent it deep into the right-field seats for a game-winning homer, lifting the Oakland Athletics to a 5-4 victory over the Rangers in a rare Monday matinee.
Josh Willingham hit a tying home run leading off the eighth against Texas reliever Arthur Rhodes, and the A's took three of four from the reigning AL champions.
Texas had its chances late in the game, too.
Grant Balfour (2-1) walked three batters in the top of the 10th to load the bases for pinch-hitter Yorvit Torrealba, who struck out swinging on the right-hander's 30th pitch.
The Rangers lost their sixth in eight games and 12th of 19 following a 9-1 start.
"We're not where we want to be but we're not going to panic either," Washington said. "Things will turn around and all we can do is keep getting them out there and see what happens. But at least we're getting them out there. We just need to get a couple of hits when we need them."
Matsui's clout against Oliver (1-3) was just the third of the season for the slugger, his first at home and Oakland's first walkoff homer of 2011. Matsui added an RBI groundout in the fifth.
"If you saw it or heard it, you knew it was way back there," A's teammate Andy LaRoche said of the winning drive.
Michael Young hit a two-run double and a sacrifice fly but the bullpen couldn't hold a one-run lead for Texas starter Derek Holland, who allowed eight hits and three runs in seven innings.
The Rangers were hoping to gain some momentum from the series finale heading into a three-game series at Seattle in which Texas will miss Mariners ace and reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Felix Hernandez.
"We've just got to do a little bit better job," Rhodes said. "It was a tough series here. We've got to keep our head up and go out tomorrow and get Seattle."
Oakland's Kurt Suzuki homered for the second time in three games and went 6 for 16 with two homers, five RBIs and three runs scored during the series.
Matsui is batting .242 in his first season with the A's and still finding himself at the plate.
"The adjustments are ongoing on a daily basis," he said. "That's what I have been doing and it's what I will keep doing."
Young and Adrian Beltre had back-to-back sacrifice flies in the fifth but Texas couldn't bounce back from a 7-2 loss Sunday. Washington sat second baseman Ian Kinsler and used third baseman Beltre as the designated hitter to give him a day off his legs.
Brandon McCarthy, facing Texas for the first time since 2006, allowed four runs and six hits in six innings, struck out four and walked two.
The A's overcame two more errors — both by McCarthy — that gave them an AL-leading 27, one more than the Rangers after Texas also had one Monday. Oakland is also tied with Houston for most errors in the majors.
David DeJesus put the A's ahead when he scored on a safety squeeze bunt by Cliff Pennington in the second. Suzuki hit his third home run leading off the fourth.
Lee Greenwood's "Proud to Be An American" blared between the first and second innings a day after President Barack Obama announced the death of terrorist Osama bin Laden. A's public address announcer Dick Callahan asked fans to "Raise their Budweisers" in appreciation for those who serve our country. One female fan sported a short-sleeved flag shirt.
Notes: Rangers RHPs Tommy Hunter and Neftali Feliz will be sent on rehab assignment to Double-A Frisco on Wednesday. Hunter, on the 15-day disabled list all season with a right groin strain sustained in spring training, got through a bullpen session Monday at extended spring training in Arizona with no issues. He will start for the RoughRiders on Wednesday and go three or four innings. Feliz threw a bullpen in Oakland. Sidelined since April 23 with right shoulder inflammation, he will pitch an inning of relief Wednesday for Frisco.
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