Astros lose in extra innings

Astros daily report presented by APG&E: 3 hits from the 4-3 loss

Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

With a special win the night before on Apollo 11 night to start the three-game set, Houston could lock up the series with a victory on Tuesday night. Here is how the middle game wound up:

Final Score (11 innings): A's 4, Astros 3.

Record: 65-38, first in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Yusmeiro Petit (3-2, 2.59 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Collin McHugh (3-5, 5.12 ERA).

1) Gurriel just can't stop driving in runs

Houston gave former-teammate Mike Fiers the most trouble in the second inning. Michael Brantley started the inning off with a single, which gave Yuli Gurriel a chance for another RBI when he came to the plate with one out.

What should have been no surprise with how he has performed of late, Gurriel came through with a ball to center field which got by Ramon Laureano and went all the way to the wall. Gurriel kicked himself into gear, getting around the bases for an inside-the-park home run to give Houston a 2-0 lead.

2) Miley nearly throws a complete game shutout

Wade Miley, who usually moves fast on the mound, was even more efficient and quick than usual on Tuesday night. He took complete control of the game with each Oakland batter, retiring the first sixteen he faced in order. He allowed his first baserunner and hit with one out in the sixth.

He worked around that hit, getting the next two batters out to finish off the inning. He would allow two more hits in the seventh but stranded both of them as well to keep his shutout going to the eighth. He recorded yet another 1-2-3 inning in the eighth and did so on eleven pitches to earn a chance to finish the game in the ninth.

In the ninth, Miley had his chance to complete the game, but after a leadoff walk and a single had his excellent night drawn to a close. It was his longest start of the season, beating the seven innings he pitched back on May 29th.

The closer Roberto Osuna came in to erase the runners and notch a save, but instead allowed a go-ahead three-run home run, with two of the those charged to Miley. Miley's final line: 8.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 6 K, 0 HR.

Osuna would retire the next three batters in order, giving the Astros the bottom of the ninth to tie or walk it off.

3) Astros send it to extras but lose in the eleventh

In the bottom of the ninth, Yuli Gurriel got on base with a one-out single, then was pinch-run for by Myles Straw. Straw moved to third on a single by Josh Reddick, then scored on a sacrifice fly by Aledmys Diaz. Houston would be unable to walk it off, sending things to extra innings.

Will Harris was next out of Houston's bullpen to pitch the top of the tenth and worked around a two-out single to send the game to Houston's half of the inning. In the bottom of the tenth, George Springer led the inning off by reaching base on an error, but he would be erased on a double play as Houston came up empty to extend the game another inning.

Collin McHugh was the next reliever on the mound, and he would struggle in the top of the eleventh. He allowed a one-out single, then a walk, setting up a go-ahead double to put Oakland in front 4-3. He would get one more out before Chris Devenski came in to get the third out.

Houston would not be able to come through in the bottom of the eleventh, losing the middle game of the series and setting up Wednesday as the deciding matchup.

Up Next: Houston and Oakland will wrap up this series tomorrow afternoon with a day game at 1:10 PM. The Astros will have Justin Verlander (12-4, 2.99 ERA) on the mound to try and win the series, going against Chris Bassitt (7-4, 3.96 ERA).

The Astros daily report is presented by APG&E.

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This week, the NASCAR Cup Series heads for the high banks of Michigan for the Firekeepers Casino 400. This will be NASCAR's second doubleheader of the season as they continue to draw closer and closer to the playoffs. Earlier in the summer, NASCAR announced the final races before the playoffs and in those number of races they announced that they will be running two doubleheaders. One this Saturday and Sunday at Michigan and another in a few weeks at Dover. We saw a double feature race earlier this year at Pocono, so it will be interesting to see here in a different set of circumstances at Michigan. This track is a two and half mile oval that races similarly to a track like Auto Club as they both have plenty of grooves and lanes to run on. With this aero package it should be interesting to see if the racing is similar to last year's.

It was announced this week that NASCAR would unveil their last batch of races for the remainder of 2020 and for the most part the season remains pretty much the same. Richmond will get back one of it's races that was cancelled and Phoenix Raceway will remain the season finale. NASCAR had made it clear that they were hoping to keep their playoff races intact and luckily they were able to. We will still get to see Martinsville decide who gets to race in the final four, and we will still see Bristol in the playoffs as well. The only question that remains now is will these races have fans? I have a feeling that at tracks like Las Vegas we will see no fans but on tracks like Texas and Bristol or Richmond, I have a feeling they will be much more lenient. Only time will tell as everything remains fluid.

It was announced on Thursday that Erik Jones will not return to the #20 car for Joe Gibbs in 2021. This clears a path for the next Gibbs driver in the pipeline, Christopher Bell. The writing had been on the wall for a while as Toyota and Joe Gibbs had too many drivers and not enough seats to fit all of them. The same thing happened back in 2017 when it was announced that Erik Jones would be replacing Matt Kenseth in the same car. While I hate to see Jones lose his ride, I think it will only be temporary as there are a bunch of good rides available. Besides, you have to feel as if he is now the favorite to replace Jimmie Johnson next season after Brad Keselowski announced he will be back at Penske next season.

Another headline that was announced this week was the changes that will be made to how the field will start at the Daytona Roval. NASCAR also announced Thursday that they would use weighted metrics to decide who starts on the front-row. The formula will consist of three criteria including, finishing position in the previous race, position in owner points, and fastest lap time in the race. None of this makes any sense to the average viewer. In fact, most of the drivers I would imagine don't understand it either. There were probably better ways of doing this including actual practice and qualifying. I can understand that NASCAR is trying to do everything in their power to make sure drivers are limited at the racetrack, but this is becoming more and more unnecessary by the week.

As I mentioned earlier, Erik Jones will be looking for a ride next season. What better way to prove you belong than by winning races and that's what I predict he will do this weekend at Michigan. This is a track that is special to him considering he is a native Michigander. While he hasn't had the best finishes here over the past few years, I will say he has been running well. Despite a lackluster 24th place finish at New Hampshire, before that he had rattled off back-to-back top tens with a fifth at Texas and a sixth at Kansas. I look for him to get back in the grove and get his third career win and leave a big impression on all the teams looking for a driver next season. Look for Erik Jones to win one of the races this weekend.

The other driver I have winning this weekend is Joey Logano. On Saturday, Logano will roll off first to begin the weekend. This is a track where Joey has been stellar at as well. He has won here four times including back in 2013 in a race that put Logano back on the map and began his reign at Penske. I look for him to get win #4 this weekend at Michigan.

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