Houston can't complete the sweep

Astros' winning streak ends with loss to A's in series finale

Houston's offense was quiet on Thursday against the A's. Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

With wins in their last six games, including the first two in this three-game set to secure the series victory, the Astros entered Thursday afternoon's finale looking for a sweep to continue their winning streak. Instead, a cold day at the plate would allow Oakland to salvage a game after two early runs.

Final Score: A's 2, Astros 1

Astros' Record: 54-34, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Frankie Montas (8-7)

Losing Pitcher: Lance McCullers Jr. (6-2)

Rough first inning for McCullers Jr.

Just like in the other two games in this series, Oakland was the one to jump out to the first lead of the day. It came on three straight hits with one out in the top of the first: a double, an RBI ground-rule double, and an RBI single to put the A's up 2-0 before Houston could come up to bat. McCullers Jr. did well after that, limiting his opponent to those two runs, tossing six more scoreless frames to finish with a quality start. His final line: 7.0 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 8 K, 0 HR, 107 P.

Astros' winning streak ends

Meanwhile, the Astros were struggling against Frankie Montas. They were held without a run through the first six innings, then got on the board in the bottom of the seventh after a two-out double by Kyle Tucker set up an RBI double by Chas McCormick, cutting the deficit in half at 2-1. That would be their lone offensive highlight of the day, though, as Oakland's bullpen would finish the job to hand Houston the loss and kept the Astros from the series sweep.

Up Next: Houston will now turn their attention to a weekend series with the visiting Yankees, starting with Friday night's opener at 7:10 PM Central. The pitching matchup for the game is expected to be Nestor Cortes (0-0, 1.29 ERA) for New York and Jake Odorizzi (3-3, 3.70 ERA) for the Astros.

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