SEATTLE — Cracking the 100-RBI mark was a load off Khris Davis’ shoulders.
He’d been stuck on 99 through six consecutive games before launching his 41st homer in the sixth inning Wednesday against the Angels, making him the 17th player in Oakland history to reach 100 RBI but the first since Frank Thomas drove in 114 in 2006.
“This game’s mental, and that’s the kind of things we deal with as players,” Davis said before Thursday’s game against the Mariners. “The numbers are always in our faces. It’s on the scoreboard, it’s everywhere. Just to get it off my back a little, it’s a breath of fresh air.”
But asked whether reaching 40 homers or 100 RBI was a bigger deal to him, Davis doesn’t hesitate. He thinks going deep 40 times is the greater accomplishment. As the A’s cleanup hitter most of the season, he said driving in runs consistently is a primary job requirement.
“I should (rack up a lot of RBI),” he said. “I feel like that’s how it should be, right? I think 75 would be way too low.”
Davis’ 41 homers rank No. 8 on Oakland’s single-season list. With one more, he’ll tie Jose Canseco (1988) and Mark McGwire (1992) for sixth place.
The Mariners entered Thursday’s series opener two games behind Baltimore for the American League’s second Wild Card spot. As the A’s took batting practice, the Orioles-Blue Jays game played on Safeco Field’s JumboTron.