Nothing kicks the Oakland A’s offense into gear quite like a trip to Detroit.

The A’s swatted three home runs off American League ERA champ Anibal Sanchez on Monday and dispatched the Tigers 6-3 in Game 3 of the American League Division Series. After being held to just three runs and 11 hits combined in the first two games in Oakland the A’s showed the kind of muscle that fueled their drive to the American League West title.

Josh Reddick and Brandon Moss hit solo shots and Seth Smith added a two-run drive that deflated the Tigers after they had erased a three-run deficit to tie the game in the fourth. Combined with some stellar bullpen work over the final four innings the A’s moved to within a victory of advancing to the AL Championship Series for the first time since 2006.

They hold a 2-1 lead in this best-of-five series with Game 4 set for Tuesday at Comerica Park. If Boston clinches the other ALDS against Tampa Bay on Monday night Game 4 will start at 4:07 p.m. If Tampa Bay wins the game will begin at 2:07 p.m.

Things got spicy in the bottom of the ninth as A’s closer Grant Balfour and Tigers designated hitter Victor Martinez began jawing in the middle of Martinez’s at-bat. Both benches and the bullpens cleared but no punches were thrown.

The A’s won three of four at Comerica Park in late August a series in which they scored 34 runs and tallied 52 hits. From that point on their offense rolled through the rest of the regular season. Manager Bob Melvin pointed to that series as a turning point for his club.