Houston moves to 4-0

Astros stay perfect, complete sweep of A's

Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Having outscored the A's heavily through the first three games to jump out to a 3-0 record and lead in this series, the Astros entered Sunday's game looking to complete the four-game sweep. They would do just that and in the same fashion as the prior three.

Jose Urquidy had a decent start, allowing just two runs, but it was once again Houston's offense that sealed the victory to improve them to 4-0 and take an early stranglehold on the AL West.

Final Score: Astros 9, A's 2

Astros' Record: 4-0, 1st in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Brandon Bielak (1-0)

Losing Pitcher: Sean Manaea (0-1)

Houston jumps ahead early, again

Houston wasted no time trying to set the tone of the game on Sunday, with Kyle Tucker providing an early spark via a solo home run to jump out to a quick 1-0 advantage in the top of the first. Oakland would respond in their half of the inning, tying the game with an RBI-double during a lengthy sequence for Jose Urquidy.

In his first game back with his former team, Jason Castro made his presence known in the top of the second, putting the Astros back ahead with a two-run opposite-field homer to make it 3-1. Yuli Gurriel added two more in the next frame, getting a two-out two-RBI double to extend the lead to 5-1.

Blowing it open late

After the lengthy first, Jose Urquidy would settle in and breeze through the next few innings, not allowing another hit until a one-out triple in the fifth which would end his day after surpassing 100 pitches. His final line: 4.1 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 101 P.

Brandon Bielak would take over for Urquidy, allowing an RBI-groundout to bring in the runner on third and cut the lead to 5-2 before finishing the fifth. Houston would get that run back in the top of the sixth, getting back-to-back singles to start the inning with runners on the corners before Myles Straw would get the RBI-groundout to make it 6-2. A rare error by Matt Chapman would keep the inning alive and two runners on base, setting up Chas McCormick for his first major-league home run, bringing in three more to make it 9-2.

Astros complete the four-game sweep

Bielak remained on the mound, completing an impressive outing by taking the game the rest of the way, retiring every batter he faced, all 14, en route to the win. Houston completed the four-game sweep in dominating fashion, sending the A's to 0-4, with the Dodgers coming to Oakland next.

Up Next: The Astros will remain in California, heading to Anaheim to face the Angels for a short two-game series on Monday and Tuesday. The opener will get underway at 8:38 PM Central Monday evening, with Luis Garcia (0-1, 2.92 ERA in 2020) getting a shot as Houston's fifth starter, for now. Jose Quintana will make his first regular-season start for Los Angeles after spending the last four years with the Chicago Cubs.

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Houston gets back in the win column

Astros end six-game skid thanks to a gem by Greinke

Zack Greinke tossed a gem Saturday night. Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

After the Mariners roared back Friday night to get a walk-off win over the Astros, dashing their hopes of ending their losing streak, Houston tried to even the series with a win on Saturday night with their ace Zack Greinke on the mound. Greinke would do his part, throwing a terrific game, and the Astros would squeak out one run, which was enough to get back in the win column.

Final Score: Astros 1, Mariners 0

Astros' Record: 7-7, fourth in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Zack Greinke (2-1)

Losing Pitcher: Chris Flexen (1-1)

Plenty of hits, but only one run

Although the Astros were racking up hits against Chris Flexen, they had little to show for it. Eight different batters would notch ten hits against him, but the only time it amounted to a run was on a two-out RBI-single by Taylor Jones in the top of the fourth, giving Houston a 1-0 lead.

Greinke spins a gem

Luckily for them, Zack Greinke was making it look like that would be enough. He cruised through the Mariners all night, allowing just four hits while giving up zero runs along with six strikeouts, one of which moved him past 2,700 on his career. He could have attempted to finish the complete-game shutout, but at 91 pitches after eight, Dusty Baker opted to bring in closer Ryan Pressly for the ninth. Greinke's final line: 8.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 6 K, 91 P.

Houston finally ends their losing streak

With the high-leverage save opportunity in the bottom of the ninth, Ryan Pressly entered to hold on to the one-run lead. He would do his job, finishing off the win for Greinke and putting an end to Houston's disappointing losing streak.

Up Next: The third and final game of this series will get underway at 3:10 PM Central on Sunday. Jake Odorizzi (0-1, 13.50 ERA) will look to make a rebound from his disappointing first start with the Astros, while the Mariners will start Nick Margevicius (0-1, 7.04 ERA).

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