The A's 2020 season came to a disappointing end Thursday in Los Angeles.
After winning Game 3 to keep their season alive Wednesday, the A's fell to the Houston Astros, 11-6, in Game 4 of the American League Division Series at Dodger Stadium.
The A's jumped out to a 3-0 lead Thursday on a three-run homer by Ramon Laureano in the second inning, but the Astros outscored Oakland 11-3 after that and ran away with the clincher.
AL West champions for the first time since 2013, this is not how the A's expected the playoffs to go.
Instead of making a deep run towards their first World Series title since 1989, the team will leave MLB's bubble and head back to Oakland to start preparing for the offseason.
For the third straight season, Bob Melvin's team had the talent to win the World Series, but once again they came up short of that goal.
The A's finished the coronavirus-shortened 2020 MLB season with a 36-24 record and secured the No. 2 seed in the AL playoffs. They dropped the first game of the AL Wild Card Series to the Chicago White Sox, but won the final two games of the series to advance to the ALDS.
Everything seemed to favor the A's in the ALDS against the Astros. Oakland was the higher seed and Houston finished the regular season with a 29-31 record. But the Astros knocked around starters Chris Bassitt and Sean Manaea in Game 1 and 2, respectively, en route to two wins. In Game 4, Frankie Montas pitched three clean innings, but allowed five runs in the fourth inning and the A's never were able to recover.
The Astros blew a 7-4 lead in Game 3, but they didn't fumble away a two-games-to-one series lead on Thursday.
Now the A's are left to wonder what went wrong in a season that ended earlier than they expected.