Houston gets back in the win column

Astros snap losing streak with extra-inning win over Royals

Astros' Chas McCormick and Carlos Correa
Chas McCormick drove in three runs in Houston's win over the Royals on Thursday. Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

Chas McCormick drove in three runs in Houston's win over the Royals on Thursday.

Entering Thursday's finale as losers of their last four games, the Astros were entering desperation mode for a win to turn the tide. With the Royals already securing the series victory by taking the first three, Houston was able to salvage a game to at least grab some forward momentum and keep the A's at bay in the AL West standings.

Final Score (10 innings): Astros 6, Royals 3

Astros' Record: 71-50, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Ryan Pressly (5-1)

Losing Pitcher: Wade Davis (0-3)

Houston ends up in an early hole as Garcia gives up three runs over five

Things looked bleak for the Astros early, with the Royals putting up a 3-0 lead over the first three frames against Luis Garcia. They scored in the bottom of the first, getting a leadoff single, then later in the inning, a sac fly to go ahead 1-0. They tacked on two more in the bottom of the third, working a leadoff walk to set up a two-out, two-run homer to make it a three-run lead.

After Houston got one of the runs back on an RBI groundout by Chas McCormick to make it 3-1, Luis Garcia rebounded and held the Royals to their two-run lead. He tossed scoreless innings in the fourth and fifth, finishing his day a bit early as he continued to have his inning and pitch count limited. His final line: 5.0 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 70 P.

McCormick ties it up, game heads to extras

However, Garcia's offense would get him off the hook, putting together a successful top of the sixth. They knocked three-straight one-out hits, starting with a single by Carlos Correa, followed by an RBI double by Aledmyz Diaz and game-tying RBI double by Chas McCormick, his second RBI of the day.

The 3-3 score held through the rest of the scheduled innings, with Phil Maton first out of the Astros bullpen and giving his team two scoreless innings, allowing just a walk over that span. Ryne Stanek was the next reliever out, and he erased a one-out single to keep the score tied to the ninth, where after a scoreless top half by Houston's offense, Ryan Pressly got out of a two-runner jam to force extras.

Astros snap their losing streak

The Astros took advantage of the free runner in the top of the tenth, loading the bases on a single and a walk before Aledmys Diaz broke the tie with a single to give Houston their first lead of the day, 4-3. McCormick was next up and would again provide a big at-bat, working a walk to double the lead to two runs; before later, a pinch-hitting Taylor Jones would add one more on a sac fly, making it 6-3 going to the home half.

Cristian Javier came out of the bullpen in the bottom of the tenth, and he retired the side 1-2-3 to finish off the win for the Astros. Houston salvages a game in the series, and with the A's winning earlier in the afternoon, keeps the Astros' lead in the AL West at 2.5 games heading into the weekend.

Up Next: The Astros will return home to start a homestand on Friday night, beginning with a three-game series against the Mariners. In the opener at 7:10 PM Central, Lance McCullers Jr. (9-4, 3.22 ERA) will be on the mound for Houston, while Yusei Kikuchi (7-6, 3.82 ERA) is expected to start for Seattle.

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Justin Verlander will start for the Astros on Friday night. Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images.

Houston Astros (22-28, third in the AL West) vs. Oakland Athletics (21-31, fourth in the AL West)

Oakland, California; Friday, 9:40 p.m. EDT

PITCHING PROBABLES: Astros: Justin Verlander (2-2, 3.97 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 26 strikeouts); Athletics: Ross Stripling (1-8, 5.19 ERA, 1.56 WHIP, 32 strikeouts)

BETMGM SPORTSBOOK: LINE Astros -170, Athletics +142; over/under is 8 1/2 runs

BOTTOM LINE: The Oakland Athletics begin a three-game series at home against the Houston Astros on Friday.

Oakland has a 21-31 record overall and a 12-14 record in home games. The Athletics have hit 65 total home runs to rank third in the AL.

Houston is 22-28 overall and 8-13 in road games. The Astros have a 13-4 record in games when they did not allow a home run.

The teams match up Friday for the fifth time this season. The Astros lead the season series 4-0.

TOP PERFORMERS: Brent Rooker has 11 home runs, 17 walks and 32 RBI while hitting .286 for the Athletics. Max Schuemann is 12-for-35 with a double and two RBI over the past 10 games.

Kyle Tucker leads Houston with 17 home runs while slugging .638. Alex Bregman is 9-for-38 with three home runs and six RBI over the last 10 games.

LAST 10 GAMES: Athletics: 2-8, .225 batting average, 5.25 ERA, outscored by 27 runs

Astros: 7-3, .272 batting average, 3.13 ERA, outscored opponents by 20 runs

INJURIES: Athletics: Esteury Ruiz: 10-Day IL (wrist), Darell Hernaiz: 60-Day IL (ankle), Alex Wood: 15-Day IL (rotator cuff), Paul Blackburn: 15-Day IL (foot), Joseph Boyle: 15-Day IL (back), Freddy Tarnok: 60-Day IL (hip), Luis Medina: 60-Day IL (knee), Sean Newcomb: 60-Day IL (knee), Aledmys Diaz: 60-Day IL (calf), Miguel Andujar: 10-Day IL (knee), Ken Waldichuk: 60-Day IL (elbow), Trevor Gott: 60-Day IL (elbow)

Astros: Oliver Ortega: 60-Day IL (elbow), Bennett Sousa: 60-Day IL (shoulder), Penn Murfee: 60-Day IL (elbow), Luis Garcia: 60-Day IL (elbow), Lance McCullers Jr.: 60-Day IL (elbow), Jose Urquidy: 15-Day IL (forearm), Kendall Graveman: 60-Day IL (elbow)

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