Evan Gattis broke a scoreless tie in the sixth with a two-run single and Jake Marisnick drove in two as the Astros guaranteed a series win for the first time in three weeks, dropping Oakland Wednesday night in a 5-1 triumph. Mike Fiers stayed hot, tossing one-run, three-hit ball over six innings for his fourth win in his last five starts. Four relievers finished with one hit allowed over three shutout innings to ice the victory.
Correa: Beats tag at plate
(c) Associated Press
Sean Manaea was a tough nut to crack, blanking Houston for the first five innings but Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa singled to open the sixth, winding up on second and third. Gattis cracked an 0-2 pitch into center field and the throw home was almost in time to nab Correa but he reached around the tag with his spread out left arm and slapped the plate as he dove across. Two outs later, Marisnick smacked a single to left which plated Gattis for a 3-0 lead.
Yonder Alonso doubled off Fiers in the seventh and, after a walk to Ryon Healy, A.J. Hinch decided it was time to pull his pitcher. Alonso eventually scored on a force play off the bat of pinch-hitter Stephen Vogt.
As has been their practice all season, the Astros increased their lead once the Oakland bullpen appeared. With Santiago Casilla on the hill in the eighth, Yuri Gurriel singled and Alex Bregman smoked a line double to left before Marisnick plated Gurriel with a sacrifice fly. In the ninth, Correa slammed his 14th homer of the season, a drive to center off Josh Smith that just eluded the grasp of a leaping Jaycob Brugman.
The Astros look to complete the sweep in a Thursday afternoon getwaway game. David Paulino (1-0) gets the nod against fellow righty Jesse Hahn (3-4) in a 2:35 Central finale. A weekend trip to Seattle follows and the return of Lance McCullers.
Off the field, reliever Jandel Gustave, who has been on the disabled list, successfully completed Tommy John surgery on his pitching elbow and is lost for the year as he rehabilitates.
- Bob Hulsey