Astros can't solve Triggs
Athletics prevail 2-1 in pitcher's duel

Triggs had the Astros' number
Saturday night
(c) Houston Chronicle

Houston Astros manager A.J. Hinch pencilled in what looked like a sure-fire lineup for Saturday night's contest against a banged-up Oakland Athletics team -- but Andrew Triggs was on a mission. The A's starter struck out a career-high nine, allowing only five hits and no walks in seven scoreless innings. Triggs retired the last ten Astros batters he faced in a 2-1 win at Minute Maid Park for the visiting A's.

A promising first inning that failed to produce any runs proved costly for the Astros. With only one out and runners at second and third, Carlos Correa and Carlos Beltran both struck out to end the threat.

Joe Musgrove was almost as good as his counterpart on the mound. Houston's big right-hander retired the first ten batters he faced before Jed Lowrie connected for a home run to break a scoreless tie. It looked like our former friend, then foe, then friend, now once again foe Lowrie had driven in another run in his next at-bat too. Jed's fifth inning single to right was turned into out number three when Josh Reddick gunned down Chad Pinder, who was attempting to score from second.

Musgrove would last 6-1/3 innings, allowing only the one run on five hits and a walk while fanning six. Joe was more efficient than usual, needing only 86 pitches to record a season-high 19 outs.

Khris Davis extended Oakland's lead to 2-0 with his tenth home run of the season, an eighth inning blast off Will Harris.

Jose Altuve cut the lead in half with a homer to the Crawford boxes off Ryan Dull in the last of the eighth, but Santiago Casilla nailed down his fourth save of the season with a solid ninth that ended with a double-play grounder off the bat of Brian McCann.

The two A.L. West rivals have split the first two games of the series and will settle the score Sunday afternoon in a 1:10 tilt pitting Dallas Keuchel against Oakland righty Jesse Hahn.

Injury note: Jake Marisnick (7-day concussion D.L.) began a rehab assignment at AA Corpus Christi Saturday. As the Hooks' DH, Marisnick was 2-for-5 with a double and a run scored. He also struck out twice. Jake should be in the Hooks outfield on Sunday and could be back with the Astros as early as Monday. Tony Kemp would appear to be the man on the roster bubble when Jake returns.

- Greg Thurston